Neville celebrates bicentennial

July 3rd, 2008    Author: Michael Bradley    Filed Under: News

The village of Neville celebrated its bicentennial with a festival June 28.

Attended by approximately 1,000 people, the festival was designed not only to celebrate 200 years as a municipality, but to allow native Neville families a chance to recognize and reunite with loved ones.

Donna Simmons, who arrived in Neville from California last week, said that the event was the high point of the year for her and her whole family.

“I am hoping to fill in some missing information on our family tree,” Simmons said. “I am very proud to have come from such a close-knit and proud village.”

The Neville Bicentennial Committee encouraged all former residents to attend the community
The village, which has around 130 residents, chose the theme of "Neville - 200 years and still afloat," for the event.

Beautiful weather welcomed those attending, and one of the event organizers, Richard Crawford, said that everyone was very pleased with the results.

"The participation by residents and about 20 families, who had tents set up for their reunions, went well beyond our expectations," Crawford said. "The booths and vendors were very busy and the historical tours were sold out."

Crawford said that everyone was thrilled with the event.

"It was a wonderful day for all of the families," he said. "The family reunions were enormous and that was a major motivator by organizers to hold the event."

Crawford said that the bicentennial celebration was important to have for many interesting historical reasons.

"Neville sits on the first land that was surveyed in the Virginia military district and probably the whole Northwest territory," he said. "And the Neville family who founded the town was historically significant."

Neville, which is located on U.S. 52 between Chilo and Point Pleasant, was laid out in 1808 and Pressley Neville, who the town is named after, moved there shortly after.

Neville was an officer in the Continental Army during the American Revolution; he was given the land in the village in exchange for his military service to the country.

"Again, the festival was a great success," Crawford said.

Crawford, Clermont County's historian, who gave two historical bus tours the day of the festival, was asked to join in organizing the event by Neville natives Ralph Adams, Janet Blackburn, Michelle Boeckmann, Gwen Colonel, Tom Dix, Lena Fisher, Lorraine Jones, Pete Krimmer, and Sam Richmond.
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