The public is invited to attend Founders Day at Thomas Hunter Middle School in Mathews on Monday, Feb. 3.
The evening will include a clam chowder, vegetable beef soup and salad dinner for $7 at 5:30, followed by an opportunity to visit displays and booths in the multipurpose room and the Book Fair kickoff in the library.
At 7 p.m. there will be a program to celebrate both the life of the school’s namesake, Thomas Hunter, and the early years of the school. The program will include music, dancing, speeches, readings and slide presentations. Graduates of Thomas Hunter High School will be recognized.
Assistant principal Amy Hauser, who is coordinating the celebration, said she has been searching for information about Hunter and will welcome any additional information residents might have to offer. Hunter was born into slavery in 1806 on the Woodstock plantation in Port Haywood that belonged to the Smith, Tabb, and Lane families. He was emancipated after the Civil War but stayed on the plantation for several years before buying his own home in Port Haywood. He died in 1910 at the age of 104.
Hauser found that George Edward Tabb Lane, who served as Mathews County’s treasurer in the 1920s and was a member of the family that owned Woodstock, donated $25 toward the building of the original Thomas Hunter Agriculture and Training School with the stipulation that it be named after Hunter, his family’s longtime faithful worker.