Welcome to our Chapter!
Updated October 4, 2020 (photo at top)
Founded in 1947, the Fredericksburg-Rappahannock Chapter is
one of the oldest of the approximately 250 chapters
reporting to the National Chapter of the Izaak Walton League. The
Chapter, known locally as the Fred-Rapp Chapter of the IWLA,
Inc., serves central Virginia in the fight to protect our
country's natural heritage and improving outdoor activities
for all Americans. We invite you to learn about our
work and join us in supporting important conservation
initiatives in our historic community.
The Fredericksburg-Rappahannock Chapter is a non-profit
conservation organization recognized as a Section 501(c)(3)
public charity under the Internal Revenue Code and serves
the Fredericksburg area of Virginia. Our 123 acre park is in
the heart of the Fredericksburg-Chancellorsville-Wilderness
Civil War Battlegrounds. This is some of the most
environmentally sensitive land in the U.S. We have
approximately 850 members, residing in several counties
surrounding Fredericksburg, who participate in Conservation
Efforts including a local roadside clean-up campaign done
quarterly, tree planting, water testing and public education
in conservation of natural resources. Our members both
maintain and enjoy a large stocked fishing pond, 4 firearms
ranges, joint-use archery ranges, hiking trails, wooded
picnic areas, playground areas, approved camping, 3
pavilions, and a club house.
We host both Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts that camp, train
and perform conservation related services at our facility.
Our Chapter has now hosted and provided support for the
Mart for over 60 Years. The Fredericksburg Dog Mart
event actually dates back over three centuries and
celebrates the trading of goods between Native Americans and
the early settlers. A truly historic and fun-filled family
Other programs include a schedule of fishing, hunting,
archery, and range operation safety training for both young
and old. On a quarterly basis knowledgeable speakers are
invited to address our membership on topics related to
Our nature trails and excellent fishing draw hundreds of
youthful campers each year. Our youth are the future
Herbert Pritchett - President
To conserve, restore and promote the sustainable use and
enjoyment of our natural resources, including soil, air,
woods, water and wild life
"To strive for the purity of water, the clarity of air, and
the wise stewardship of the land and its resources; to know
the beauty and understanding of nature, and the value of
wildlife, woodlands and open space; to the preservation of
this heritage and to man's sharing in it. I pledge myself as a
member of the Izaak Walton League of America."
Chapter Bylaws and Operating Policies
The current Bylaws
constitute the rules of
governance of our members and the highest level local
regulation of our affairs.. Additional operating policies
issued by the Board of Directors to further define the
operating rules for the Chapter.
History of The Virginia Division of The Izaak
Walton League of America
Division of the Izaak Walton League
was formed on August
8, 1929. It, together with the Garden Clubs of Virginia and
the Virginia Academy of Science, petitioned in 1929 for the
establishment of what became the Virginia State Park system.
This was delayed by the Depression and was not implemented
Organized July 22, 1944, with nine chapters, the Virginia
Division has concentrated on conservation education and
habitat protection. The Division's most famous member was
President Herbert Hoover, an active member of the former
Orange County Chapter. Another, Senator A. Willis Robertson,
was a League chapter leader and a former state wildlife
commissioner, who as a Congressman, co-sponsored important
legislation, the Federal Aid and Wildlife Restoration Act of
1937 -- better known as the Pittman-Robertson Act.
In 1940, the Arlington-Fairfax Chapter won a significant
victory with statewide adoption of a Chapter supported
12-point fish and wildlife law enforcement program, including
law enforcement officer training. Twelve years later, the
Lynchburg Chapter successfully stopped the state assembly from
making the wildlife commission's executive director a
Conservation efforts by the Division involving water cleanup,
the state's model water pollution control law, and longtime
support of conservation education were recognized in 1959. The
state wildlife agency presented the Division with a citation
for outstanding work in conjunction with a popular annual
wildlife essay contest from 1948 to the late 1960s. In 1961,
more than 40,000 entries from school students were received.
Since 1946, efforts by the Division and IWLA to stop the
proposed Salem Church Dam on the Rappahannock River succeeded
in November 1974, when the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers ended
all planning and construction.
In 1978, the Division purchased 611 acres of private land
within the George Washington National Forest and held it for
later purchase by the government.
Efforts by the Division and other conservation groups to
protect the James River succeeded in January 1984 when Hampton
Roads Energy Company abandoned plans to build the Portsmouth
Oil Refinery. The Division sued in 1983, warning that oil
spills could destroy the river's oyster beds.
In 1988, Division members helped secure a ban on phosphate
detergents. The Alexandria Chapter also worked to protect
Huntley Meadows, a 1,261-acre wetland used by bald eagles for
The Division revitalized the Virginia Save Our Streams Program
in 1996 securing annual donations and grants from the Virginia
State Assembly and environmental groups in excess of $100,000
to support the volunteer water quality monitoring program.
Currently, the Division has signed a memorandum of
understanding with the Virginia Departments of Conservation
and Recreation, Environmental Quality and Game and Inland
Fisheries for a cooperative move to improve Virginia's
Today, the Virginia Division of the Izaak Walton League of
America can boast of 18 chapters and more than 9600 Ikes in
the Old Dominion State.