Adventures of Tom Sawyer
How Mark Twain came
to know the "Milum" Apple, is currently unknown, but apparently he liked it.
Origin of the Milam Apple
Judge W. E. Bohannon of Criglersville in his letter of 16 October, 1927 in reply to a letter of H. M. Milam of Atlanta, Georgia, dated 11 October, 1927 says, "Thomas Milum received a grant of land of 203 acres from Lord Fairfax, dated 31 January, 1749 and upon which Thomas Milam lived and died in 1785. This grant of land is located in Madison County, Virginia at the eastern foot of the Blue Ridge Range and situated ten miles northwest of Madison, the county seat. The "Milam Apple" known all over the country, originated on this farm and got its name from Thomas Milum. Also the first pass over the Blue Ridge Mountains from this county to the valley was opened by Thomas Milum and bears his name to this day, "Milam's Gap." No Milam has lived in this section since the death of Thomas. He with the old families came up from Eastern shore as the county was being settled, Thomas Milum had no sons.
(Madison County was cut off from
in 1792; Culpepper from Orange County in 1748; Orange County from
Spotsylvania County in
1734; Spotsylvania County was formed in 1720.)
Comments about the Milam Apple
The Milam Apple is medium in size, with large speckled areas of red and green-yellow. It has a sweet taste similar to the Red Delicious, but with an added touch of tartness. The combination of sweetness and tartness makes it very tasty. It is reported to also be a fine cooking apple, and if stored well, is a "good keeper," meaning it will last longer than most without spoiling. It ripens from late September to early October.
During The Great Depression of the 1930's, the land which contained former orchards of Milam Apples was purchased and converted to use as park land within the Shenandoah National Park. Because it has a trait of sprouting new trees from the roots of older trees, it continues to grow "wild" in a few areas of the park.