J. S. Dishman Farm

J. S. Dishman Farm

James Samuel Dishman (1885-1979) and Betty Bell Grigsby Dishman (1888-1964), rented and moved onto an 82 acre farm near Ninde’s Store, King George County, Virginia shortly after marrying in 1916. They raised seven children on the farm, and both lived there for the remainder of their lives.

King George CountyThe land was originally part of a 2000 acre land grant in the mid 1600’s from from the King of England to Anne Bernard. The Bernard family called the land Poplar Farm and maintained possession for nearly 200 years. In the mid 1800’s the land passed to the Turner family for a short time before being divided into three large tracts. One tract was acquired by the Coakley family in about 1849. In the 1880’s, Betty Coakley married George Price and was given part of the tract described as “a parcel of land on the south side of the road”. The Price’s built a home on the land in the 1880’s, and added two bedrooms (one upstairs and one downstairs) to the west end of the house about 10 years later.

Sam and Betty Dishman married in 1916 and rented the Price farm soon thereafter. The annual rent was $75, and it remained the same for over twenty years until they purchased the farm from the Price heirs in 1938 for $1850 ($1800 direct plus $50 under the table to one of the heirs to convince the other heirs to agree to the sale).

The home was renovated shortly after the 1938 purchase. The old kitchen attached to the back was moved away from the house and used as a meat house (just visible in the left of the photo below). A new kitchen with a cellar was added in its place. The wood shingle roof was replaced with a metal roof and the windows were replaced. Sometime later the front porch was screened and the back porch was enclosed.

Dishman Farm 1940
Dishman Farmhouse (circa 1940)

Electricity was added about 1940 when electrical service first came into the area. The last major change occurred in 1947 when indoor plumbing and oil heat were added. The home remained essentially the same until Sam’s death in 1979 when the farm was divided and sold. A survey conducted at the time of the sale determined that the actual size of the land was about 93 acres. The home was renovated by the new owners and is still occupied to this day.

Dishman Farm 1980
Dishman Farmhouse (1980)

2 thoughts on “J. S. Dishman Farm”

  1. Question:
    – In the 1940 picture, what was the building partly visible off to the left? Smokehouse? The old kitchen?
    – In the 1980 picture, there is a power pole visible that isn’t in the other picture. Do we know when grid electricity was first brought to the house?
    – No oil tank visible in the 1940 picture; the woodstove was the heat source until …?

    1. Will,
      The building in the 1940 photo is the old kitchen which was moved there just after the house was purchased in 1938 and was renovated. It used to be attached to the back of the house. The relocated kitchen was used as a meat house until it was later torn down. Electricity came to the farm about 1940, and indoor plumbing and oil fired heating was added in 1947. I assume wood stoves heated the house prior to the oil heaters.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *