Freedmen's Bureau Records: N. C. Brackett to R. M.
Manly, December 17, 1866
Brackett reports on the schools in his district, which encompasses the Shenandoah Valley. According to Brackett, Staunton has the most black students in the Valley, and Waynesboro still needs a place to hold classes.
Chap. R. M. Manly
Supt. Education Richmond Va.
Dec. 17, 1866
Harpers Ferry W. Va.
I have the honor to report that the schools under my charge were generally very prosperous during the month of November. The following places, have each about one hundred different pupils in day and evening schools, viz. Harpers Ferry, Martinsburg, Shepherdstown, and Front Royal. They are all making commendable progress. Charlestown has no school, it being impossible to obtain board. I am trying to secure a colored teacher who can board with colored family. Winchester, Harrisonburg and Lexington have each about two hundred pupils. We meet less opposition and more cooperation on the part of the white people in Harrisonburg than in any other town in the Valley. I may add also that the colored people do more for themselves than in any other town.
In Staunton we had about three hundred
and fifty pupils in all.
Several other towns, as Woodstock and Waynesboro are greatly in need of schools, and would have them if buildings were prepared for them.
In these schools we have a good number who by a little extra training might become competent teachers. We are already beginning to [unclear: fit] the need of a Normal School where the more advanced pupils may go and be properly [unclear: classified] and instructed. I have in my district one teacher sent by the National Freedmens Assn over by the A.M.A., four by the Old School Presbyterians, and twenty by the Baptist House Mission Society. One or two colored persons are also teaching in the district. About fifteen hundred persons in all are daily receiving instruction in this Valley.
Supt. Schools Shen. Dis.