Roseanna Croy Dawson

Roseanna Croy Dawson moved to the house at 307 E. Roanoke Street in Blacksburg Virginia when she married William Dawson on January 2, 1840. Their first child, Robert, was born there in 1841. The family moved to McDonald's Mill where William Dawson taught school. Martha, Melissa, and Willie T. were born at McDonald's Mill. The family then moved back to their house on Roanoke Street. The other chldren were born there, and Roseanna and William lived there the rest of their lives. William Dawson died in 1878, and Roseanna Croy Dawson died in 1906.

There have been some changes in the Croy house but not major ones. The front door was closed, and a new one made on the side of the house where there is a glassed-in porch. The former street door was converted into a window. The boxwood at the corner of the house was planted in 1867 from a cutting which came from Mt. Vernon, the home of George Washington.

Adam Croy, Roseanna's father, is mentioned in a booklet Methodism in Blacksburg:

"A history of the Blacksburg church would never be complete without the mention of Adam Croy, a most successful and efficient sexton from 1833 to July 1861. His home was near the church, and both there and at the church he left nothing undone that could add to the comfort of the people. Everything must be in perfect order. Woe to the dog that came into the church or the person inclined in any way to disturb the worship. He was constantly watching, and he moved quietly about the church in his pumps, snuffing the candles.

The lights used in the first church were dipped candles, but later they were moulded in frames, which was considered a great invention, making the labor much less. However, they did not give as bright and clear a light, but this was remedied by having more of them. Candlesticks were fastened to all the pillars, window frames and pulpit, and a chandelier of them was formed in the center. The candles were moulded by Mrs. Croy. Later lamps filled with lard were used, then oil lamps.

Georgia Croy, who lived in the house until 1993, was the granddaughter of Rose Ann Croy Dawson. She was born in the house as was her mother Ellen (Ella).

According to D. Pack, compiler of the diaries, "Rose Ann Croy Dawson's diaries were written for her children. She jotted down the weather; people who visited for sewing by her daughter, Ella; happenings in Blacksburg."

D. Pack notes in the introduction to Blacksburg in 1898: "Roseanna Croy Dawson's diary...was written in pencil in a small composition book. The writing is very dim now and the paper brittle. As you will see, she used very few capitals and practically no punctuation. Two spaces indicate separation of thought. Her spelling is sometimes wrong but then sometimes she spells everything right so you can see she was just jotting things down without thought of someone copying it in the future."

Note: Information from the introduction to Dawson, Roseanna Croy. Blacksburg in 1898 Copied by D. Pack, 1978. F234 B5 D3 Spec.
The following diaries of Roseanna Croy Dawson are available in the Special Collections Department of the University Libraries:

Special Collections Homepage
Questions or comments to:
Tamara Kennelly, University Archivist * 540/231-9214
Last updated May 1, 1998