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Born January 7, 1889, in Raleigh, North Carolina, Roberta Webb moved to Harrisonburg after graduating from Hampton Institute, where she attended school from 1906-1909.
She first taught in the old Newtown School at Elkton, where the school had 45 children and one large room, according to the Daily News-Record. After two years there, she was invited to teach at Effinger School in Harrisonburg until 1922, when her doctor ordered her to take off a year to rest. In 1924, she married the Rev. John M. Webb.
Since married women did not teach at the time, Mrs. Webb created new ways to serve her community, including starting what is believed to be one of Harrisonburg’s first child care centers. After that, she began caring for elderly homeless men, and she started an adult education program.
Roberta Webb died in December 1990, nearly 102 years old.
(Photo at right provided by Dale Harter.)