Saturday, May 17, 2014

All in the Family

... well almost.

When Wayne McLeskey purchased the property that would become Chesopeian Colony in 1955, there were four existing homes only one of which he bought. Today, the land McLeskey didn't develop, and its three houses, have changed significantly. First, there are now nine houses. Of the original three, only one has remained relatively similar in the view from the street, one has been demolished, and one house remodeled to the point of being almost unrecognizable. This article addresses the stories of the people who first lived there and how the land ownership changed and evolved over time to become a part of the Chesopeian Colony we know today.

The West Family

Before becoming Chesopeian Colony the peninsula was known by cartographers as West Point, named after John William Casper West, the landowner. That name likely did not exist before the late 1920s; however, it still appears on some maps today. J.W. Casper West was born in 1881 in his mother's hometown of Culpepper, VA. His father, William A. West, Jr, was born in Cornland, Norfolk County (now Chesapeake), VA. (Cornland is located between Hickory and the Dismal Swamp.) The West family had been southside residents for at least four generations, but claim ancestry back to the early years of Jamestown. William A.'s older brother, John T. West, was the Superintendent of Norfolk County Schools from 1870 to (at least) 1900 (except one term, 1882-86). The John T. West Elementary School was built in Norfolk in 1906, began offering high school classes in 1911, and in 1914 became the first accredited high school for blacks in Virginia (perhaps in the entire South). It became so popular that the high school was relocated in 1917 and was replaced by the newly constructed Booker T. Washington High School in 1924. The John T. West Elementary School continued as an elementary school until it closed in 1980. It was placed on the historic register, but demolished in 2006.

Cadet Casper West
(VPI “Bugle” 1902)
In 1896 William A. outleased his farm and moved his family to Court St in Portsmouth to better manage his successful lumber business (West Lumber Co.). Casper attended Virginia Polytechnic Institute and graduated in 1902 with a degree in civil engineering. William A. died in 1907 and left Casper, age 26 and the only (known) child, all his business interests. In 1908 Casper both married and lost his mother in the same year.

Casper's bride was Adelaide Drewery Woodhouse, born 1883 in Princess Anne County. She was descendant from some of the earliest and best known families in the County, e.g., Woodhouse, Keeling, Cornick, and Land. Addie's father, Johnathan Woodhouse IV, was the President of the Princess Anne and
623 Baldwin Ave (2014)  
(Google Earth)
Virginia Beach Telephone Co, and the VP and GM of the Standard Electric Supply Co.. Addie was fourth of eight children, the first to marry, and the first to move out of the family home on Duke St in Norfolk. After the wedding Addie and Casper lived on Court St in his parents Portsmouth home — recently vacated by their deaths. By 1911 they would move to Westover Ave in Norfolk and have the last three of their four children: Elizabeth Frances, Clara, Adelaide, and the youngest, William Casper. By 1920 the family lived at 623 Baldwin Ave along with both of Addie's parents and a live-in housekeeper, Rosa Wheeler. The Wests would continue to live at this address for more than 20 years. The main offices for Casper's businesses were in downtown Norfolk, Addie would teach school, and their youngest child would not graduate Maury High School until 1935.
The white brick home at 665 Chesopeian Point was 

built in 1922, and is clearly the oldest home 
in the neighborhood.

In 1909 Casper purchased a 98 acre tract of land that would later become the north end of Chesopeian Colony. According to Virginia Beach tax records a house was constructed on the Point in 1922 — that being the white brick house that later became McLeskey's home. This estate was known to the family as “Westwood”. The 1922 date roughly corresponds to the completion of the new Virginia Beach Blvd which significantly improved (and shortened) the transportation route to Norfolk. City directories at the time, however, indicate that the Wests maintained their primary residence in Norfolk on Baldwin Ave until about 1946. Thus, Westwood was likely used as a summer home. The house was not painted white until at least the 1940s. The original house was smaller and a natural red brick color. Additions were built and, because Addie needed a wheelchair in her later years, an elevator was installed.
In 1929 Casper acquired another 67 acres between the Point and Virginia Beach Blvd that he and/or Adelaide would control for the rest of their lives. Addie would die in September 1952 and Casper would follow in April. Their oldest daughter and her family moved into Westwood while the estates were being settled. McLeskey purchased the property from the Wests' estates in February 1955. The white brick house on 1.3 acres became a numbered lot in the new subdivision, and was thereby technically the first home in Chesopeian Colony. This was the oldest of the four houses that existed at the time of McLeskey's purchase, and the only one he owned. The remaining three were owned by others and were not technically part of the new subdivision.

The Adams Family

The Adams House
Built in 1939 (664 Chesopeian Point)

The second oldest home on the peninsula is across the lawn from the first and was owned by Sarah Adams and her husband, Howard. In 1939 Addie West conveyed a tract of 3.4 acres to her younger and only surviving sister, Sarah Scott Woodhouse,
and the house was built. Howard and Sarah had lived in several
Howdy” Adams
(Purdue “Debris” 1908)
different apartments in Norfolk, and at one time they lived next door to the Wests on Baldwin Ave. Sarah was a very independent woman who would shoot at the turtles that were eating baby ducks in her pond (a phenomenon well know to anyone in the area living on a small freshwater lake). Sarah also had psychic powers; although, it wasn't a gift she wanted to pursue. Howard Glenn Adams was born in Ohio, grew up in Indiana, but lived most of his adult life in Norfolk. He was a 1908 graduate of Purdue University in civil engineering and worked for the Virginian Railway Company. Sarah and Howard had one child, a daughter, Mary Ellen, but she would marry and move out before her parents moved to Princess Anne County. Mary Ellen married Reynold Delos Hogle, a 1929 Naval Academy graduate that would later become the Commander, 5th Naval District at NOB Norfolk (1966-1967). He would retire at the rank of Vice Admiral.
Following the deaths of Casper and Addie West, in 1954 Sarah acquired from their estates an additional parcel of 2.3 acres adjoining the southern boundary of her existing property, thus giving the Adams a total of 5.7 acres, including the entirety of a small man-made lake 
(The lake was created sometime after 1929.) The added land would offer a buffer against any future development and maintain the solitude to which they had undoubtedly become accustomed.

After McLeskey began developing the surrounding property, minor changes were made in the Adams' west property line to accommodate a new road, and the bulk of the underwater land was donated to the City for drainage and boat basin. In 1959, a year after Howard's death, Sarah subdivided the property into Parcel 'A', 3.7 acres for her residence, and 'Other' (being the remainder). I guess she decided a buffer was no longer necessary, since Chesopeian Colony was developing into a neighborhood she didn't mind living next to. In 1964 Sarah sold the 'Other' parcel to Ronald Chadwick Austin and his wife, Aleene Janice Austin. Sarah died in August 1966, and her property was sold. Still today, this remains the largest single parcel in the neighborhood. It is interesting to note that the development of Chesopeian Point did not begin until 1966, the year Sarah died. Could this have been out of respect to her privacy? I don't know, but I'd like to think so.

The Austins did not build on the land they had purchased, but instead sold it in 1967 to Anna V. DeAngelo who immediately subdivided it into Parcels 'B' and 'C'. Parcel 'C' was sold in 1968 to Anna D. Marshall, and a house was built in 1971 (652 Chesopeian Point). Harry and Anna DeAngelo would eventually build a house on Parcel 'B' in 1972 (650 Chesopeian Trail).
History of the Adams Property

 The Other West Family

Our House”
320 Chesopeian Trail
is almost unrecognizable as it appears today
In March 1949 Addie West conveyed a tract of 5.7 acres on the Boulevard to her only son and youngest child, William Casper “Bill” West. Around that same time, or soon thereafter, Virginia Beach Blvd was widened and about eleven feet was sliced off the original southern border of the property. In 1950 Bill and his wife, Annie Braithwaite Croonenberghs, would build the house at what is now 320 Chesopeian Trail. Annie and Bill married in Princess Anne County in 1944, and by 1950 they had three children when they moved into their new home.

Annie & Bill West
1940s @ Ocean View Park
Annie's father, Anthony Joseph Croonenberghs, was a first generation American whose family had moved from Belgium to Princess Anne County by way of Colorado, where Tony was born. Annie's mother, Annie-Laurie Braithwaite, was descendant from a long time Princess Anne County family (as was Bill). Many years ago people used to say that everyone in Princess Anne County was related to everyone else. While not exactly true, there is a lot of truth in the statement. It's a pretty good bet that there is a familial relationship between any two people descendant from colonial era, land owning families from the same county — especially when those families have continue to live in the same county. This was no exception. Annie and Bill were 5th cousins, 1x removed, via the Land family.

Although they moved into a new house, Annie and Bill's marriage did not last. Somewhere around early 1951, Annie packed up the kids and moved in with her parents in Birchwood Gardens. Well, that's not exactly correct, since Birchwood Gardens did not exist in 1951. Annie moved in with her parents on the 90+ acre farm that would later be sold to become Birchwood Gardens. Today, the south

Bill & Ginny West
June 1983
loop of a street named Croonenbergh Way marks the approximate location of the farmhouse. (You would think the developers could have at least spelled their name correctly.) Annie would move on to become a school teacher and would later remarry two more times.

In 1952 Bill married a redhead named Virginia Lee Bonney. “Ginny” and Bill were 7th cousins, 1x removed. Sometime between 1951 and 1954 Bill would build a new house, north of the first, at what would become 328 Chesopeian Trail. This was Ginny and Bill's home, but the first house would always be known as “Our House” to Bill's children. This second house no longer exists. It was demolished in 2002 and the land subdivided. Bill West died in 1983, followed by Ginny in 2009. The following illustration provides a history of the evolution of the Bill West property into the Chesopeian Colony of today.
History of the W.C. “Bill” West Property
Fig. 1:   In orange, the initial 5.7 ac tract conveyed to Bill West by his mother in 1949. The original road to the Point is highlighted in yellow. The western boundary of that road ran along a ditch, the center of which was the original property line. The southern boundary of the tract abutted Virginia Beach Blvd, and the northern and southern boundaries were nearly parallel. The future Chesopeian Trail is depicted as dashed lines.
Fig. 2:   In red is land conveyed to the State for the first widening of Virginia Beach Blvd (about 11 ft)(circa 1950). In blue is 0.324 ac conveyed to Bill by his parents' estate in 1954. This addition made this north property line perpendicular to the old road, and, as it would turn out, perpendicular to the future Chesopeian Trail also.
Fig 3:    In February 1955 McLeskey purchased the land remaining in the West's estate, approximately 150 ac. Then in June 1955 there was a land exchange between McLeskey and Bill West that gave McLeskey the parcel adjoining the Boulevard (blue), and gave Bill Lots 7 & 8 of the new Chesopeian Colony plus the road shoulder between the old and new roads (green).
Fig. 4:   Following the land exchange a consolidated view of Bill's property is depicted in orange.
Fig. 5:   In October 1955 Bill conveyed a portion of his property (~1.4ac) to Walter Bainbridge (blue). This site contained the house built in 1950, i.e., 320 Chesopeian Trail (“Our House”).
Fig. 6:   Bill & Ginny West conveyed Lots 7 & 8 to Cooper Construction Corp. in 1971 (green). Cooper Construction, in turn, sold Lot 7 with improvements to Oswald S. & Myrtle C. Ingvaldsen in 1972 and Lot 8 with improvements to Lonnie Jr. & Lucy A. Ruffin in 1973.
Fig. 7:   After Bill died in 1983, his wife, Ginny, subdivided the remaining property into Lots A & B. Her residence was on Lot A (328 Chesopeian Trail). The City would begin referring to the Bainbridge property as Lot C. In 1986 Ginny sold Lot B to Lucy Construction, Inc., in February and Lot A (with the house) to Charles W. Bell in June. Ginny moved to Thoroughgood. Lucy Construction built a house on Lot B and in 1987 conveyed it to Lonnie & Lucy Ruffin, who then moved across the street. (And yes, the “Lucy” of Lucy Construction is Lucy Ruffin.)
Fig. 8:  Charles Bell sold Lot A in 2002 to Kimball A. & Mara G. Minter, and the house was demolished. The Minters again subdivided the property, and in February 2003 sold Lot A-2 to Kerry M. McGeein. McGeein built a house and sold it in 2004 to Walter F. Jr. & Nancy J. Bender, who moved from 601 Chesopeian Trail. Lot A-2 is now 324 Chesopeian Trail. In May 2003 the Minters transferred Lot A-1 to Legacy Construction (their company) and built a house. In June 2003 the property was sold to Aljurnel E. & Maria M. Lowe. Lot A-1 is now 328 Chesopeian Trail.

The Bainbridge Family

In October 1955 Bill West subdivided and sold “Our House” on 1.4 acres to Walter Bainbridge. This lot is nearly equivalent in size to the former McLeskey home site, making those two the second and third largest parcels in the neighborhood today.

Walter Bainbridge
(ODU Photo Collection)
Walter Herbert Bainbridge (a.k.a. “Bain” to his USC&GS coworkers) was born in 1897 in Big Spring, Texas. He graduated from the University of Texas in 1922 with a degree in civil engineering. He had a 34 year career with the U. S. Coast & Geodetic Survey (now a part of NOAA). While on assignment in Hawaii in 1927, he and a coworker were missing the "girls they left behind," and “after lengthy correspondence and involved arrangements, the girls arrived with their trunks full of trousseau and wedding finery(NOAA History, Profiles in Time, C&GS Biographies). Transportation records indicate his future bride arrived on 16 July 1927, and, I expect, they were married shortly thereafter. It was a double wedding in the home of the Surveyor General of the Islands. Bain married a very brave 20-year-old Willie Karnes Hayes from Cross Plains, Tennessee. After a two-year honeymoon in Hawaii and while in transit to an east coast assignment on a ship out of Norfolk, the couple paused in Texas just long enough to deliver their son, Walter Jr.

Bain's career would take him from San Francisco (1923-1926) to Hawaii (1927-29) to Norfolk (1930-33) to Seattle (1938-45) to Portland (1949-51) again to San Francisco (1952-1954 with 6 months in Alaska) and back to Norfolk in 1954. He would serve on nine of USC&GS ships. (Presently there are 19 active ships in the NOAA fleet.) His later tours in Portland and San Francisco were at the rank of Commander, and he was the field office District Supervisor. He was promoted to Captain and in May 1954 returned to Norfolk to served as the District Supervisor until 1957 when he retired from the Government. Bain would go on to become an engineering professor at Old Dominion College/University in the 1960s.

Walter Jr., a.k.a. “Red” Bainbridge, began competing in ice figure skating while the family was living in Seattle. He was quite good and loved the sport; so he ultimately turned pro. As a teenager he took up ice dancing, and with partner Lois Waring won the US Championships in 1947, 48, & 49. (They finished 2nd in 1946.) The pair won the North American Championships in 1947 & 1949 (Wikipedia). In late 1947 the US Figure Skating Association invited them to the 1948 Olympics in St. Moritz, Switzerland to demonstrate the sport of ice dancing, which was almost unknown at that time. England and Belgium were the only countries represented in the sport (Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc.,

Bain and Willie continued to live in Chesopeian Colony until their deaths in March 1987. Walter Jr. and his wife, Patricia, sold the property in 1988. Red would never live there.

So, how did the Bainbridges find the house in the relatively remote pre-Chesopeian Colony. Was it simply by chance or did they have a connection to the West family? Surprisingly, there was a link.

The Morton Family

Cadet Jeremiah Morton
(VPI “Bugle” 1928)
Casper & Addie's oldest daughter, Elizabeth Frances “Bett” West, was married twice. Her first husband was Jeremiah Strother “Jere” Morton, a DC/Fredericksburg/Hopewell native who graduated from Virginia Polytechnic Institute in 1928 with a degree in civil engineering. In October 1928 he entered duty with the USC&GS assigned to a ship based in Norfolk. Bainbridge would arrive in Norfolk about 19 months later, and it's likely the two met at that point. Morton would serve on a total of 10 ships, 5 were the same as Bainbridge, although not necessarily at the same time. Morton would serve almost 26 years, all of which was during Bainbridge's 34-year career, but it's difficult to determine how much their assignments overlapped. However, during the early 1940s both the Bainbridges and the Mortons lived on High St in Chevy Chase, MD, across the street from each other. The families were good friends.

Tragedy Strikes

Sniper Bait”
CDR Morton's survey crew on Saipan
(NOAA's Historic Coast & Geodetic Survey Collection)
In 1952 the Mortons moved from Seattle to Norfolk where Jere initially attended the Armed Forces Staff College. Following that assignment, the Mortons continued to live in Norfolk in the Bayview area. Casper West died in April 1953, and sometime afterward the Morton family moved into Westwood. Bett managed the affairs of her parents estates. Jere was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer and made trips to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, MD. However, his prognosis was not good, and, together with the associated physical and psychological challenges, would lead to his retirement on 31 Jul 1954. Upon retirement CDR Morton was promoted to the honorary rank of Captain — a practice in effect from 1925 to 1959 for officers that had been specially commended for performance of duty in actual combat. Jere served with the Marines in WWII and received a bronze star for his role in the assault on and capture of Saipan, Marianas Islands. A newspaper article at the time labeled Morton's survey crew “Sniper Bait” (see picture above). Then, just thirty-eight days into his retirement, Jere walked out of Westwood, down the dirt road that would become Chesopeian Trail, and shot himself. Jere died 14 days after his 48th birthday. Five months later the property was sold to McLeskey.

Final bullets

  • The first house was built on the West Point peninsula in 1922, but the first full-time residence was the second house built in 1939. It would be another ten years before the third house was built, and six years later McLeskey would buy the surrounding property.
  • Only the West family owned property at the time of McLeskey's purchase. Bainbridge would buy later the same year, but was in residence for about a year before the first family would move into the new neighborhood.
  • Four of the five adult male residents before 1956, excluding McLeskey, were graduate civil engineers. Each would marry only once. All five would die while living on the property.
  • All of the deceased residents before 1956 (male and female), including McLeskey, are buried at the Eastern Shore Chapel Cemetery with the single exception of Annie Croonenberghs.
  • The West family was connected to the property in one other significant way
    to be revealed at a later date.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Go West Young Man!

... and so he did.

The cardinal rule in real estate development is to first secure the land, either by deed or via a purchase option. If you don't, someone may steal the project from right under your feet.

Land Acquisition
In the pursuit of Chesopeian Colony, McLeskey's first and largest land acquisition occurred in February 1955. The Lynnhaven peninsula, known as “West Point”, was purchased by Westwood Homes, Inc (Wayne & Faye McLeskey) from the estates of J.W.C. West and his wife, Adelaide. The Wests died in 1953 and 1952, respectively, and had owned most of the property going back to August 1909. As is frequently the case when there are multiple heirs to real estate, liquidation is the easiest, and sometimes, the only way to achieve a fair and equitable distribution.  Accordingly, the timing probably could not have been better for McLeskey. The land (shaded in orange) had been divided into two parcels: 97.5 acres, which included the present day Chesopeian Point, and 67 acres bordering Virginia Beach Blvd. The areas shaded in black, for the most part, were specifically excluded from the purchase agreement and were never owned by McLeskey.

West Point is bordered on the east by a section of the Lynnhaven River known as London Bridge Creek and on the west by Nicholson's Creek. In those days waterfront property ownership typically extended to the middle of the river, creek, or stream, measured at low tide. Unfortunately, the course of a stream can change over time due to natural causes, or otherwise, sometimes creating ownership issues. (You'll note the jagged property line in Nicholson's Creek which followed the course of the stream at the time of the 1937 survey.) McLeskey would later dedicate the balance of the submerged land to the City for a boat basin and drainage — first on the east side, and then much later on the west side.

The second largest acquisition, 37.7 acres (yellow), included the present day south side of North Kings Rd., the north side of Queen Anne Rd., and the (reportedly soon to close) Farm Fresh shopping center. The land was purchased from Louis S. Philhower and his wife, Maude, in April 1955. The Philhowers purchased the land in June 1937. When the first subdivision plat of Chesopeian Colony was recorded in August 1955, McLeskey owned only a five-foot shoulder along the south side of Queen Anne Rd.

The property south of Queen Anne Rd. (green) would not be purchased until June 1958 from Wade G. Harding and his wife, Arlene. This purchase created the only lot in Chesopeian Colony that is not accessible from Chesopeian Trail. The address is 2814 Virginia Beach Blvd, and the house and other buildings existed prior to July 1941. Although technically a part of Chesopeian Colony due to the mechanics of it's purchase, it is otherwise unrelated. The adjacent property at 2820 Virginia Beach Blvd. was specifically excluded from McLeskey's purchase, and is, therefore, not in Chesopeian Colony. Both 2814 and 2820 are today owned by Smith Electric Co.

Frequently, when contiguous land is purchased from multiple sources, the metes and bounds don't actually meet in the most desirable manner. Some of these issues were addressed in the first acquisition. For example, the new Chesopeian Trail was somewhat offset from the original private road and thereby created a sliver of land adjacent to one of the property owners who would remain. These odds and ends were simply reassigned ownership in the new deed — the trade offs being necessary to complete the deal.

Odds & Ends
Another example of odds and ends occurred at the north end of two adjacent rectangular lots owned by the Land family (bottom right in the picture). This is the area along the street presently known as Crawford Place. But in 1951 this was a planned development named Westland created by James R. Land and his wife, Genevieve. The street was named Lakeview Rd., and it ended (literally) in a man-made, fresh water lake that McLeskey would later dub Kings Lake. After the initial land purchase McLeskey owned a small area of land on the southern shore of the lake (light blue). James Land owned a small parcel on the north shore of the lake (darker blue). So, in February 1956 in a deed of exchange, McLeskey and Land traded parcels and agreed the new property line would essentially run through the middle of the lake. Of course much later the earthen dam would be removed and the lake returned to the Lynnhaven River. In more recent years McLeskey purchased some of the lots on Crawford Place, but again, this had little to do with Chesopeian Colony.

It's rather interesting to note that the Land's development was called Westland, McLeskey's initial purchase was made via Westwood Homes Inc., the peninsula was named West Point, and the predominant landowner's surname was West. This was quite obviously not a random coincidence. It further leads to speculation that McLeskey's initial name for the Colony may have been Westwood, and if so, that name would have been viewed favorably by the West heirs. Of course once the land ownership exchanged hands, all bets were off.

Finally, is the curious case of a triangular parcel on Virginia Beach Blvd (shaded in red). This was a residential site and home to Maysville E. Mills and her husband, Henry, that was purchased in April 1923. This 0.6 acre lot was the northern apex of a 17 acre triangular parcel that existed before Virginia Beach Blvd. was constructed in the 1920-22 time frame. Maysville and her son, Jack, were finally convinced to sell to McLeskey in April 1974, which eliminated the final barrier to the building of a commercial strip mall. Originally, McLeskey had planned to extend Apasus Trail to the Boulevard and perhaps add a few more residential lots, but a commercial venture was a more appropriate land use and would provide a long term income stream. You may also notice that the apex of this lot extends some 20 feet into the backyard of 2609 Tarkill Run. The online City map indicates that this interference was never resolved.

So, going back to those parcels shaded in black — the ones McLeskey did not own. Who were these pilgrams that staked their claims to the land before there was a Chesopeian Colony? How did they come to live there when Princess Anne County had so much other land available? What would ultimately cause them to leave their property? Answers and more useless information will be published in the next edition as the history of the land continues.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

In the beginning ...

... and then there was Wayne McLeskey.

Born Ferber Wayne McLeskey, Jr., on 19 September 1923 in Norfolk, Virginia, he was the only child of Wayne, Sr (1888-1955) of Anderson, South Carolina, and Mae Belle Akers (1895-1997) of (what is now) Newport News, Virginia. From the beginning Wayne, Jr., lived on W 34th St in Park Place with his parents at the home of his aunt, Lucille Akers Munden, and her three children. (Lucille's husband, CAPT James Munden, died in 1926.) Wayne, Jr., was younger than his cousins by only 1-5 years; so he wasn't raised as an “only child”. Wayne, Sr., was a car salesman who seemed to work for a different company every year. By 1940 Wayne, Sr., had moved out and lived on W 35th St.. Mae Belle would later marry William J. Hunt and eventually live in the Colony on Cattayle Run. Wayne, Jr., attended Maury High School, and was still listed as a student in 1942. He graduated with the class of 1947 at age 23. By 1944 he was on his own and living at 728 Raleigh Ave. It was there that he almost certainly met Faye (if he had not met her earlier).

Lina Faye Edwards was both “the farmers daughter” and “the girl next door”. Born in 1925 she was the youngest of four children of farmer Junius Britton Edwards (1892-1957) and Elizabeth “Lizzie” Welser Elliott (1897-1980). She was raised near the township of Rich Square, North Carolina (about 17 miles southwest of Murfreesboro on US 258). (Norfolk city directories from the 1940s suggests the following facts, which have not been confirmed.) In 1943-44 Faye moved to 722 Colonial Ave. in Norfolk and worked at the Naval Operations Base in support of the war effort. By 1947 she was living at 724 Raleigh Ave, next door to Wayne, Jr.. In 1949 Wayne, Jr., was still on Raleigh Ave, but Faye had moved to 705 Redgate Ave. By 1951 they had married and were living in Apt 4, 742 Shirley Ave.

1950 map of Norfolk depicting residence locations
Wayne, Jr. (a.k.a., McLeskey) began selling real estate sometime between 1943 and 1949. His first major development was Bel-Aire (north of Little Creek Rd, east of Chesapeake Blvd). Most of the houses there were built between 1949 and 1955. From Bel-Aire the next big undertaking was Chesopeian Colony. 

So, when did Chesopeian Colony begin? One could argue the beginning was when McLeskey began looking for a new location to follow the development of Bel-Aire — but that date is uncertain. Or the beginning could be the date of the first purchase of land: 28 February 1955 — but had the Chesopeian Colony name been considered at that point? Perhaps the beginning was when the first subdivision plat was recorded by the court: 11 August 1955. Or the first lot was sold: 10 August 1956. (This is the earliest sale I've found to date. It may not be the first.) Certainly you'd have to consider the development started by the time the first house was sold: 17 October 1956. In any event, it wasn't 1957.