“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Newport News, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)



Balthrope Marker Photo, Click for full size
By Bill Coughlin, August 11, 2008
1. Balthrope Marker
Inscription. Preface: Newport News was a small community located in Warwick County until late in the 19th century. Established as a town in 1880, it was incorporated as a city in 1896. Warwick County, one of the eight original Virginia shires formed by 1634, became extinct in 1952 when it was designated the city of Warwick. It merged with Newport News in 1958.

In 1626, William Claiborne patented 500 acres along the Warwick River above Denbign. Captain Samuel Stevens acquired the estate, called Balthrope or Boldrup, in 1631. Stevens married Frances Culpeper who inherited the estate upon his death. Governor Sir William Berkeley married the wealthy widow and sold the 1,350-acre plantation to his close advisor Colonel William Cole in 1671.

William Cole (1638-1694) served as an attorney in Warwick County and commanded the countyís militia. He was a member of the Council of the State from 1674 until 1692. During Baconís Rebellion, Cole negotiated unsuccessfully with Nathaniel Bacon to end the conflict and later fled with Governor Berkley to the Eastern Shore. After Baconís death, Cole resumed his political career, serving as the colonial secretary of state from 1689 to 1692 and as a trustee for the College of William and Mary. He also acquired more land in York County, Elizabeth City County, and Warwick County. Cole left his heirs
Newport News Foundersí Trail Markers Photo, Click for full size
By Bill Coughlin, August 11, 2008
2. Newport News Foundersí Trail Markers
more than 3,600 acres of land and a rich political legacy. His son, Colonel William Cole (1692-1729), inherited Balthrope and served as a member of the House of Burgesses as well as a Warwick County justice, sheriff, and militia commander. The manor house remained in Cole family ownership until 1766. The Boldrup Plantation Archaeological Site is listed in the Virginia Landmarks Register and the National Register of Historic Places.
Erected 2007 by Newport News Foundersí Trail.
Location. 37° 10.657′ N, 76° 34.55′ W. Marker is in Newport News, Virginia. Marker is on Enterprise Drive, on the left when traveling west. Click for map. Marker is located in Skiffes Creek Historic Park. Marker is in this post office area: Newport News VA 23603, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within one mile of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Stanley Hundred (here, next to this marker); Skiffes Creek (a few steps from this marker); Mulberry Point (approx. 0.4 miles away); Fort Eustis (approx. 0.4 miles away); Leeís Mill Earthworks (approx. 0.9 miles away); Glebe Lands (approx. one mile away); Battle of Leeís Mill (approx. one mile away); Leeís Mill (approx. one mile away). Click for a list of all markers in Newport News.
More about this marker.
Markers in Skiffes Creek Historic Park Photo, Click for full size
By Bill Coughlin, August 11, 2008
3. Markers in Skiffes Creek Historic Park
Several markers are located in Skiffes Creek Historic Park, including two Newport News Foundersí Trail markers. The Balthrope marker is the one to the right.
The left side of the marker contains a painting of Governor Sir William Berkley. The right side of the marker features a picture of “Nathaniel Bacon (right) def[ying] Governor Berkeley during Baconís Rebellion, 1676. - Courtesy Central Office of Information, London.” Also present on the marker is a copy of William Coleís Coat of Arms.
Categories. Colonial Era
Cole Coat of Arms from Marker Photo, Click for full size
By Bill Coughlin, August 11, 2008
4. Cole Coat of Arms from Marker
Skiffes Creek Historic Park Photo, Click for full size
By Bill Coughlin, August 11, 2008
5. Skiffes Creek Historic Park
Marker is located in Skiffes Creek Historic Park, site of a Civil War fortification.
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 2,018 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on , by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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