In 1933, John D. and Mildred Lincoln donated nearly 2,000 acres to Virginia for a park. Within months, 660 men in the Civilian Conservation Corps were building roads, a sanitation system, a dam, trails, picnic areas, cabins and other park facilities. The park was dedicated on June 13, 1936 (see References 1 and 2).
According to legend, Molly Marley and her young child escaped capture after Native Americans raided her settlement. Lost in the forest, Molly collapsed from exhaustion. When her young child was found, the only thing the child could tell rescuers was, "hungry Mother." A search party later found Molly's body at the base of a mountain. Today, the creek where the child was found is called Hungry Mother Creek, and the mountain where Molly died is Molly's Knob (see Reference 1).
Visitors to the park enjoy fishing, boating and swimming on the lake, relaxing on a sandy beach or biking and hiking over 12 miles of trails. Organized seasonal activities at the park are mostly family oriented and include day and night canoe tours, day and night guided hikes, junior naturalist programs, outdoor concerts and films, festivals, a bike race and a triathlon (see Reference 1).
Hungry Mother State Park has 181 camp sites, 38 cabins and a six-bedroom lodge. Parking fees are $2 to $3 per day, boat launch fees are $3, camping is $20 to $28 per night and cabin fees are seasonal and vary from $57 to $354 per night. Call (276) 781-7400 for more information (see Reference 1).
Visiting the Park
Near Marion, Va., Hungry Mother State Park is located off Route 81 and is five hours from Richmond, Va., and two hours from Roanoke, Va. Camping season is from March to December, and cabins rent year round (see Reference 1).