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The following letter was written by Anna Grant Wilson, an African-American teacher, bolding stating her intentions to the white superintendent in 1916. Zenda was a thriving black community in Rockingham County after the Civil War. The letter is available courtesy Nancy Garber.

Zenda Va.

Mr. A. A. Howard:

Dear Sir; I am sending you this note, asking you, if we may open school here for the benefit of our colored children? We are hoping that you will say yes; we are asking you to let us have a term of six weeks, or at least a month.

We do not need any wood, books, nothing but the small sum of $1.00 per head; we are beginning to feel our loss in not having any school here. I will open school Monday morning trusting you will let us continue for a few weeks. It will be a great help in many ways.

I have been away during the winter, just returned yesterday the 5th, I wish to be the teacher as I am not aware of any particular objections.

I am awaiting your decision in this matter, but I hope we may be encouraged in this our attempt to better our condition.

Your's very Resply,

Mrs. Anna Grant Wilson.

Harrisonburg, VA R. L. D. no. 7


PS It may be necessary to mention something concerning the number of pupils etc., but supposing you already know much about the situation here, in regards to school affairs. I will say that there are only a few about 8 or 9, so you see we are not very expensive.

Please do the best you can for us, and you will greatly oblige these your Colored friends of Zenda, Va.

I will begin on the 8th, yet waiting for you to help us out.