System - Event Management
November 16, 2021
Time: 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Sonja Ingram, Preservation Virginia: Rosenwald Schools
Tuesday, November 16  •  7 - 9 pm  •  24 Reid Street, Chatham

Sonja Ingram will be presenting on a Preservation Virginia Project. Preservation Virginia, a private, non-profit historic preservation organization, has completed a two-year architectural survey of historic African American schools built in Virginia that received funding from the Rosenwald rural school building program. The survey was undertaken in partnership with the Virginia Department of Historic Resources and funded by a National Park Service Underrepresented Communities Grant and the Jessie Ball duPont Fund. The Rosenwald rural school building program, created by Booker T. Washington and the Tuskegee Institute, was an effort to improve the quality of public education for African Americans in the rural South during segregation. Approximately 5,500 Rosenwald Schools were built in the United States as far north as Maryland and as far west as Oklahoma. Most schools fell out of use after the ruling of Brown v. Board of Education in 1954.
            The purpose of Preservation Virginia’s survey was to find out where—and in what condition—Virginia’s Rosenwald Schools are today, identify opportunities for commemoration and nominate three schools for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places.
            “Every historic African American school, whether officially funded by the Rosenwald rural school building program or not, represents a unique and special history of the community that built it,” said Lisa Bergstrom, preservation programs manager for Preservation Virginia. “We hope this work will encourage others to continue researching, commemoration and preserving these special places.”