• dogwood across creek

    Prince William Forest

    Park Virginia

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    Reminder to park visitors. Fireworks are prohibited at Prince William Forest Park.

  • Oak Ridge Campground Site A29 closure

    Oak Ridge Campground site A29 will be closed until safety concerns have been mitigated. Please do not use that site until it has been reopened.

  • Warm Wet Spring = More Ticks

    Please check yourself and your pets for ticks continually during and after your visit. Ticks are less prevelent if you stay on trail or in mowed areas. Wearing light colored clothing helps you spot them before the attach.

  • Firewood

    Outside firewood is prohibited in Prince William Forest Park, unless it is certified USDA 'bug free' firewood. Dead and downed wood may be collected from designated areas for use while in the park. Help us protect the forest from invasive species!

  • Visitor Center Remodel 2014

    Over the next several months there will be new changes coming to the Visitor Center. Presently we are remodeling the bookstore area to give it more of a country theme. Next the exibit area will get all new exhibits. Thank you for your patience and support

The Florence Family

the florence cemetery in the woods

The Florence Family has traced their Virginia roots back to the 1600s. Their family was once in the heart of the Hickory Ridge Community, where today's Scenic Drive meet Burma Road. The family has put together a small book (PDF) on their family history. Their 320 acre track, purchased by the park on Friday, August 28th, 1936. In addition to the house and outbuildings, the tract contained a gasoline power grist mill, Joe Florence's store , and a neighborning school known as the Thornton School, which was on land donated by the Florence family. The land was purchased for $6/acre at the cost of $1,935.

The oldest grave in the graveyard is for Irvin Florence, who was born on September 28, 1883 and died 13 months later of consumption (now known at Tuberculosis). Irvin was the son of Benjamin and Alice Florence, and sibling to Lucy, Joseph, and John.

Alice L. Florence was the matriarch of the family. She was born on September 15, 1850 and Died on December 2, 1914. Alice applied for pension file after her husband's death due to his service in Company B of the 49th Virginia Infantry.

Her Husband was Benjamin Florence, who was born on August 14, 1836 and died on April 3rd, 1885.

Their daughter Lucy was born on March 17, 1867 and died at the age of 20 on April 14th, 1887, reportedly of convulsions.

Ralph Florence is also buried in the cemetery. He was the son of Alice and Benjamin's son John and his wife Lula McAlister Florence. He was one month old when he died on August 3, 1918.


Did You Know?

Great Horned Owl

An owl's eyes are fixed in place because their large size provides no room for muscle. To compensate for this, it can turn its head in almost any direction and angle, including the ability to rotate its head nearly 280 degrees. By comparison, people can only turn their heads a mere 90 degrees!