The Vipperman Ranch at Sweeneysburg

sharonzkl Member Photo

Clipped by sharonzkl

The Vipperman Ranch at Sweeneysburg - one of may on the Yesterday And Today-The...
one of may on the Yesterday And Today-The Vipperman Ranch At Sweeneysburg By SHIRLEY DONNELLY The meanderings of a widespread ministry often carry me all over the area. Recently on the headwaters of Paint Creek at Sweeneysburg a side journey aft- e r a f u n e r a l s e r v ice was made to th e home of Derba E. Vipperman and his young wife. Vipperman is a contractor, cattleman, and country squire. .His rambling ranch-type house stands on a little knoll that overlooks the waters of Paint Creek. The creek bisects the 545-acre Vipperman estate. In the spacious bottom land below the Vipperman home, herds of white faced cattle --pretty Herefords--lolled lazily in the lush grass. Something like 60 sumptuous steaks-on-the-hoof were counted grazing. or drinking the mountain water from Paint Creek. All this presented a pastoral scene not easily forgotten. It is one of the showplaces of Raleigh County. It was a hot day when we stopped for a lemonade with the Vippermans. DERBA VIPPERMAN and his father's folks hail from Patrick County, Va., -- home of Adm. "Fighting Bob" Evans, Mrs. Noel Gray, Green Jessups, and lots of other Raleigh County people today. Maberry, Va. T was the Vipperman family's post office in Patrick County. Crystal crosses are to be found in Patrick County and they are marketed as good luck pieces. It is a land of beautiful women and handsome men who make their mark in the world no matter where they light. AFTER TOURING the spacious Vipperman home, I was shown a mountain rifle that hangs above the mantle in one of the living rooms. Atop the barrel of the gun is the name of the maker of it. a gunsmith named "T. Floyd." The mechanical part of the gun bears the name of the manufacturer-"Conestoga Rifle Works." Being a mountaineer of the strictest kind, Derba Vipperman feels his set-up would not be complete without a shooting iron of the kind his forbears used in taming the wilderness. Near the old mountain rifle hangs a hornets nest about the size of a nail keg. We mountaineers used to hunt such nests in the fall after the hornets had vacated them and use particles of the nest for wadding when we loaded our muzzle-loading shotguns. They are especially good for that. ' : ' UNIQUE INDEED is the Vipperman's mail box; It is a combination affair with various com- parts for different kinds of mail. This contraption is an old Bumside stove with a couple of joints of pipe on it. One of the joints runs straight up from the stove and has an elbow joint at the top into which another joint is joined in horizontal fashion. Into that horizontal section papers are put just as the Beckley Post-Herald, is put in a round, sheet metal box looking across the picturesque valley brought to mind the day July, 1755, probably July 15, the Indians who had massacred the settlers at Drapers Meadows (Blacksburg) on Sunday, July 8, 1755, passed through what is Sweeneysburg with their captives, Mary Ingles and Betty Draper. ·Mary Ingles had given birth to a baby girl about July llth., probably at Flat Top in Raleigh County. As she passed the Vipperman ranch location, Mrs. Ingles was on horse back with her infant. Betty Draper was nursing a broken arm which the Indians were treating with poultices made of steeped leaves of the comphry plant and deer fat salve. Water from Paint Creek was used to bathe the broken arm of the captive young woman. i pipe. ' O n the fuel door of the real Burnside stove is lettered the plaintive word "bills." I liked that. Idea is if bills are put into the stove they are put there to be burned! Imagination, which is the farthest outreaching emotion of the soul, and originality, were both employed in the making of the Vipperman road-side mailbox. Address on the box is "Derba E. Vipperman, Box 255, Route 1, Beckley, W. Va." This box is a good half-mile from the front door of the ranch house and reminds one of the old saying in Texas that if your front gate isn't a half mile from your front door you are not in society in Texas! PAINT CREEK FLOWS in for- ^turous bends through the rich val- 'ley lands below the Vipperman home. He was chided for not tak-. ing some of his power shovels and making a straight course for this serpentine stream. He said that his father. M. T. Vipperman, 76, and still active, objected to straightening out the creek, pointing out that those bends in tha creek bank serve as brakes on the onward flow of the water! However, such a stream carries away a lot of soil, leading some to the belief that the good Lord will not hear the prayer, "Give us this day our daily bread" if one fails to conserve soil that produces that daily bread. As Paint Creek courses through the valley at Sweeneysburg it looks like the trail of a serpent. STANDING NEAR the big picture "window in the main living room of the Vipperman home and Thurman Sensing-'No-Win' Checks ^ The chickens we have neglected in recent years have really come home to roost in Cuba. What might be called a reaff irmation the Monroe Doctrine' by the administration the other day came one country and two presidents late. The Communist threat is poised only 90 miles from our shores. Though Secretary of. State Rusk recently declared that the United States . has a "win" policy in me-- -^m^m connection with r -a**** the cold war, a d m i n i s- tration attitudes t o w a r d Red Cuba make it clear that nothing has changed the attitude of ! the State Department with respect to the Communist island off "the Florida coast. Cuba is back in the eyes of public because the Kremlin is f . Fifteen large Soviet freighters have arrived n Cuba ra SJ^TSii^ 6 qU f htlK L of J^JS ^ T*?** 8 of mihtar personnel. And re- o b s £ e r s e in Cuba consisted of devices for

Clipped from
  1. Beckley Post-Herald,
  2. 11 Sep 1962, Tue,
  3. Page 4

sharonzkl Member Photo
  • The Vipperman Ranch at Sweeneysburg

    sharonzkl – 19 Feb 2013

Want to comment on this Clipping? Sign up for a free account, or sign in