Our heritage: Black history: Princess Anne County, Virginia Beach, Virginia

Much has been written of practically all phases of the history of Virginia, but little has been told of the Blacks and their struggles in their communities. Fewer places in America are as rich with a history of the Blacks as ours, here in Old Princess Anne County.

The author has written a history that relates the progression of the Blacks - their efforts, tribulations, triumphs, and contributions - from Jamestown, Virginia in 1619 to the present time. She tells about the stand that was taken on slavery, religion, and the impact of emancipation, and takes us through the years that saw certificates of freedom and how Blacks were affected by the laws of the court. Facts seldom contained in other histories of Virginia, such as the participation of Blacks in the Kemps Landing Skirmish during the Revolutionary War and the enlistment of Blacks in the Civil War are included.

Over the years, as twelve small communities, one room school houses, and churches were started by the Black community, opportunities improved enabling them to overcome social, economic, and political barriers. Their stories are told by those who share their personal memories of their lives in our community.


Table of Contents

Forward by Edgar T. Brown
Whar Us Come From 11
CHAPTER 1 - Princess Anne 1691 19
CHAPTER 2 - Revolutionary War 27
CHAPTER 3 - Princess Anne A Stand On Slavery 35
CHAPTER 4 - Early Free Blacks 41
CHAPTER 5 - Men of Color To Arms 47
CHAPTER 6 - Churches 57

Ebenezer Baptist Church 59
Union Baptist Church 62
Mt. Zion A.M.E. 64
BigPineyGroveBaptistChurch 67
Little Piney Grove Baptist Church 70
Pleasant Grove Baptist Church 73
Asbury United Methodist Church 74
Mt. Olive Baptist Church 78
Campbell's Chapel 80
St. Mark A.M.E Church 81
Morning Star Baptist Church 84
First Lynnhaven Baptist Church 86
Mt. Bethel Baptist Church 87
New Light Baptist Church 88
New Oak Grove Baptist Church 89
St. John A. M.E. Church 90
CHAPTER 7 - Reconstruction 91
CHAPTER 8 - Unknown Black Surfmen 103
CHAPTER 9 - Early Education 107
CHAPTER 10 - Beaches 143
CHAPTER 12 - Seatack Fire Station 155
CHAPTER 13 - Faces From The Past 161


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Due to serious labor difficulties in the colonies, the settlers attempted to utilize the Indians as a labor force but were unsuccessful. Many Indians knew the territory so well they easily escaped. Other Indians could not adjust to this new life, they became sick and died.

Black men and women were in a strange land; some were just happy to put foot on land again. They seemed to adjust because they had no choice. Suddenly their hands and muscles worked along with the whites side by side. In most instances they worked even harder or better than their white counterparts.

The first black child born in Virginia was William Tucker, son of Anthony and Isabella. They named their son after William Tucker, the man they were assigned to after their arrival in 1619. The exact date of the child's birth is not known. This child also became the first to be baptized in America about 1624. There were few American born blacks in the first twenty years because the importation of blacks declined.