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The Black History committee is on the move in Loudoun county. Their mission
to preserve, collect, promote and share the history of Black Americans who
lived in Loudoun county has resulted in many ambitious projects which Black History has undertaken since 2000. The mission is compelling, the time has come and the
work has just begun as Pauline Singletary, former chairperson of this committee,
points out.

Numerous projects have been completed; there are many under consideration.
These include the following:

• The committee was responsible for collecting nominations for the room at Balch to be named for an African American and selected Howard W. Clark
• After collecting many nominees for the naming of the Balch room, Black History then
decided to publish a book of biographies of all nominees, The Essence of a People
• The committee mounted exhibits at Balch on the nominees, on historically African American communities in Loudoun, on black history in Waterford thanks to the Waterford Foundation, and on the African American Heritage Trail of Leesburg with the help of the Loudoun Museum
• The committee consulted on the Mural project at Balch, particularly on the representation of Loudoun’s African American history
• The committee increased the library’s resources (books, Freedmen’s Bureau Papers, Afro-American) with the help of Loudoun Library Foundation grants and the Friends of the Thomas Balch Library
• The committee partnered with Loudoun Museum to develop an African American Heritage Trail of Leesburg, with the help of a grant from the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities and Public Policy
• The committee served as preservation advocates for the Settle/Dean House in Conklin and Asbury Church in Middleburg

Future Projects:
• The Black History Committee works with various groups throughout the county to promote Emancipation Day Celebrations and Purcellville Heritage Day.

Learn more about Thomas Balch Library. Visit the Balch Library Website


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