WINCHESTER, Va. (WDVM) – While many people know of former President George Washington for his grander exploits, he has a storied history in Winchester, Virginia. Most notably, the city is where he won his first election, after arriving in 1748.
But a lesser known fact is that Washington only ever passed one law while in the House of Burgesses.
“The only law he ever passed while he was in this position, which was to prevent hogs from running wild in the streets of Winchester because they polluted the water in the town run,” said local playwright Sally Anderson.
That law is the focus of Anderson’s play, titled Hog Wild in Winchester. The play was performed Thursday as part of the city’s 275th birthday celebration. Anderson cast actors from Winchester’s Little Theater to perform outside the former office of our first president.
“It’s always a challenge to do an outside show because of the weather, you don’t know if it’s going to rain,” said actress Chris Frear, who played Nan Tremble, a servant to the Reverend Lowe and rumored witch. “You still have to have props and things like that. And we’re just trying to be as historically accurate as we can with things.”
Despite the fact that Washington isn’t actually a character in the play, Anderson says few works focus on the former President’s pre-American history.
“I think one always sees George Washington as having wooden teeth and crossing the Delaware and being our president,” she said. “The interesting part of this is it involves when he was a young man.”
“It’s actually cool to live in a town where–cause I just moved here, well 20 years ago–that actually this historical stuff happened,” said Kym Sanders, who played the role of Agge Wilkes, one of Washington’s servants. “So that to me is really amazing.”
The Winchester Little Theater performed the show twice, once at 11 a.m. and again at 2 p.m. outside the Office of George Washington.