About the book, The Burning Cow Question and Other Tales From The Waterford Town Council

The cover of the Burning Cow booked from the Waterford Foundation

The cover of the Burning Cow publication

Edited and annotated by John M. Souders
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This website has included a number of excerpts from The Burning Cow Question and Other Tales From The Waterford Town Council 1891-1909. This publication gives humorous and serious stories taken from the minutes of the Waterford Town Council from 1891-1909.
More on the Town Government in the 1800s »

Two decades of town government in Waterford are distilled into this entertaining book, omitting much of the repetitive bureaucratic prose of the minutes themselves. To round out and enliven the portrait of the village glimpsed in those pages, John Souders has added background, context and occasional commentary. He has also woven in the recorded memories of residents who experienced these times first hand. Packed into these pages are answers to questions about Waterford, Virginia that, in the gay nineties, one was too polite to ask:

  • Just how much manure is too much?
  • What happened when the post-election jolliffication got out of hand?
  • How did the ladies soil their balbriggans?
  • at was the town sergeant doing with those chickens?
  • Was there something fishy about the milk?
  • Who was caught violating certain moral laws ?
  • What are the shocking facts about Dr. Connell's galvanic bath?
  • Was the livery stable really a den of sin ?
    . . . or was the death an accident?
  • And what about Mrs. Brown's ordeal?

Nothing is held back in this exclusive probe into the long-hidden
files of Waterford's old Town Council.