New historical markers include story of ‘Shoeless Wonders’

July 7, 2018

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Ten new historical markers have been approved for placement along Virginia roads, including one that tells the story of a Lynchburg-based football team known as the “Shoeless Wonders.”

The team of the Presbyterian Orphans’ Home played its first games by 1922. The players received minimal coaching, wore second-hand uniforms and competed without shoes except for a boot used during kickoffs. The team was undefeated for at least six straight seasons.

Another marker tells the story of a World War II German prisoner of war camp in Virginia Beach. Another describes a colonial-era school suggested by Benjamin Franklin and founded in Williamsburg for the education of enslaved and free black children.

The Virginia highway marker program began in 1927 and is considered the oldest such program in the nation.

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