Virginia `Ginna' Fitz, 77, writer of Anne Arundel histories

November 30, 2005

Virginia "Ginna" Fitz, who wrote Anne Arundel County histories, died of a rare disease, amyloidosis, Saturday at her home at the Bay Woods Retirement Community in Annapolis. She was 77.

Diagnosed at a rate of about 8 per 1 million Americans each year, amyloidosis causes organ failure because of protein concentration in body tissue.

Born Virginia Kate White in Long Beach, Calif., she earned a degree in political science at Radcliffe College and a master's degree from George Washington University.

After moving to Shady Side in 1980, she wrote The Spirit of Shady Side: Peninsula Life 1664-1984, now in its third printing. The Anne Arundel County Trust for Preservation awarded her its Bridgeman Award.

In 1985, Mrs. Fitz and several other residents formed the Shady Side Rural Heritage Society, and she served as its first president.

She also published a biographical novel based on the life of Jane Whorwood, who was a Royalist agent in the English Civil War.

Titled Sweete Jane, Mistress of a Martyr King, the novel depicted the love affair of Whorwood and King Charles I.

In 1991, Mrs. Fitz wrote a history of the Captain Salem Avery House, which is now a watermen's museum.

She was a member and former president of the National Society of the Colonial Dames of America in the State of Maryland.

Her husband of 48 years, Harold Carlton Fitz Jr., died in 1997.

Services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday at St. James Episcopal Church, 5757 Solomons Island Road, Lothian.

Survivors include a son, Harold Carlton Fitz III of Jupiter, Fla.; two daughters, Virginia Fitz Shea of Alexandria, Va., and Elizabeth Fitz Scott of Baltimore; two brothers, Robert W. White of Athens, Ga., and Harrison C. White of New York City; and five grandchildren.

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