The Rockfish Post Office
On my Visits to Schuyler, Virginia webpage, I described my visit to the Rockfish Post Office in 2001.
As you'll recall from watching The Waltons, Rockfish was mentioned often during the show -- although I don't think we ever actually got to SEE it.
The Rockfish Post Office was shuttered up during my 2001 visit, unfortunately. In fact, the only ones to greet me were a couple of dogs who barked and barked
at me, not extending the slightest bit of Virginia hospitality.
In 2007, a reader named Ken wrote to me describing a very different perspective of the Rockfish Post Office dogs. Read on:
Thanks for putting up the page about Schuyler! It's great! My first visit to Schuyler was in 1994 so I never got to see the original S&H
store. It's nice to see a color picture of it.
However I must defend those dogs at the Rockfish Post Office! You've besmirched their reputation and I've come to think of them as personal
friends! :-) I've visited Schuyler in 1995, 2000, 2002, 2005, Jan. of 2006, and maybe one or two other times when traveling through Virginia.
I often travel in that part of the state -- those are the dates I can definitely remember stopping.
I first encountered the dogs back in 1995. They barked a lot and that put me on guard at first. But they turned out to be quite
friendly. In fact one of them, a big black dog, was SO friendly that this was the problem! It kept throwing it's
front paws on me in it's quest to be petted and it was hard to walk around and look at the Post Office because it wanted constant
attention! There was another dog which wasn't quite as friendly but still did not show any genuine
hostility. All bark and no bite! You said they were snarling? Maybe you caught them on a day when they were in a bad mood? :-)
On a subsequent trip I was surprised to find the black dog still there. I gave it something to eat and, of course, it was thrilled
with that. The last time I was there, a couple of years ago, the black dog was still around, though moving much more slowly than the first time I
visited. She's obviously getting up in years. There was another, younger dog who was also helping to "guard" the station. They've obviously
figured out that tourists frequently stop by and can be counted on for frequent pettings, food and attention so they just hang out there all
The dogs make an interesting contribution to the experience of Schuyler. It's strange to think of a dog sitting in the same place, year
after year (not tied up or anything) a building or a landmark and expecting to see it on any particular day of any year that I, perchance,
happen to drive through.
Thanks again for the great website!
Two years later, in 2009, and eight years after my visit to Schuyler, I received a nice e-mail from the owner and caretaker of the Rockfish Post Office. Read on:
I loved your original story about the Rockfish Post Office in
Virginia. I guess I'm kind of biased because I've owned it since 2001. The big dog
was "Bear" and I think he belonged to a neighbor, but stayed in the cool
dirt below the Post Office. He slept most of the day except when someone woke
him up. He even got mad at me a few times for startling him. I learned to warn him
before working around the site. He was known to me as the "Mayor of
Rockfish" by the original owners. He died some time in 2002 and was
replaced by a female that was much smaller and better looking. Her name
is Princess and she is a chow hound. Feed her, and she might jump into
your vehicle on the way out. She barks a lot, but only will bite trying
to get the food out of your hand.
You need to revisit as we have painted the PO white with green trim, replaced the
rough hewn porch with more hard wood, and added solar
energy, weather station, and web cam overlooking the train tracks and
This summer I plan on painting or replacing the metal roof and
re-pointing the chimney. I also need to repaint the shutters and
reattach them. I'm glad that you and your readers like the place as I
realize that it really belongs to us all.
Here's a story. Probably
back in 2003 I decided to go up to the Post Office to do a little maintenance.
I opened the door and saw the ladybugs had arrived. The floor was completely
covered. I started sweeping the place out and about the time I finished, there was a line
of people at the door. I asked what they needed and they asked if I was
open and what was I selling. I told them all I had was ladybugs, but
they really weren't that tasty. I found out that this was one of the
"reunion" weekends and that all of these were on their way to visit the
museum. They saw the door open and stopped. There was around 7 cars on
that small plot of land! Guess you know what I'm going to do when I retire!
Above left: The Rockfish Post Office, sans dogs.
Above right: Who let the dogs out? (Woof, woof!)
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