Tobias Beard



A view of Charlottesville's coal tower. Photo: Jack Looney

A biography of Charlottesville’s coal tower

A partly cloudy day, late March, unseasonably warm. Two men look up as I step into a small clearing in the woods beyond the coal tower. “Hope I’m not bothering you.” “It’s cool,” one of them says. He moves over on the makeshift bench so I have room to sit down. “I saw you taking […]

A small glimpse into the local horse world

A small glimpse into the local horse world

Woodberry Payne (pictured) says that certain places make good horses. But mostly, he said, what makes a good horse is something intangible inside them. It’s about a horse’s desire, what’s in a horse’s heart. (Photo by Carissa Dezort) The spring race at Foxfield is Saturday, April 28, and Woodberry Payne will be there as usual. […]

Searching for universal meaning in the George Huguely trial

Searching for universal meaning in the George Huguely trial

During jury selection, the prosecution asked each prospective juror if he or she would feel comfortable judging someone, a question that’s harder to answer than you might think. It’s in our nature to judge others, their hair, their clothes, how good looking or smart they are, we judge and convict people for a million minor […]

Understanding the first week of the George Huguely murder trial

Understanding the first week of the George Huguely murder trial

 The Charlottesville Circuit Court opens at 8:30am, but the Huguely trial usually starts at 9:30. The first hour is taken up with other business, like Thursday’s drug court. Men and women, a clear majority of them African-American, file in to meet with their court appointed attorneys and plead their cases. Judge Edward Hogshire hears updates […]