Virginia Randolph Cottage Museum

Historical Significance

The "Virginia Randolph Cottage" was the office used by educator Virginia Estelle Randolph (1874-1958). In 1908, Randolph, a Henrico County training school instructor and daughter of parents born enslaved, was appointed the nation's first Jeanes supervising industrial teacher. Jeanes teachers were supported by the Jeanes Foundation (also known as the Negro Rural School Fund), founded by philanthropist Anna T. Jeanes, a Quaker from Philadelphia. In 1907, Jeanes donated $1,000,000 to create the Jeanes Foundation, which trained and taught teachers in the south and encouraged the upgrade of vocational training programs for teachers of black students.

Randolph graduated from the Richmond Normal School in 1890 at age16 and immediately began teaching in Goochland County and later at Mountain Road School in Henrico. Impressed with her teaching skills and methods, Jackson T. Davis, superintendent of instruction for the black schools in Henrico County, sent Randolph to other schools to teach those methods. Randolph's teaching concepts were adopted by General Samuel C. Armstrong and Booker T. Washington at Hampton Institute and Tuskegee Institute. Randolph continued teaching at Mountain Road School until her retirement in 1949. She died in 1958 and is buried in front of the building. The school closed and was reestablished as the Virginia Randolph Education Center in 1969. The 1937 brick cottage, Randolph's office and home economics classroom, was converted into a museum in 1974 to honor the educator.

Physical Description

The Museum, located in the brick cottage, is operated by Henrico County and was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1974.

Geographical and Contact Information

2200 Mountain Road
Glen Allen, Virginia
23060
Phone: 804-261-5020

Cite this Page:

Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, “Virginia Randolph Cottage Museum,” African American Historic Sites Database, accessed October 23, 2017, http://aahistoricsitesva.org/items/show/464.

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