Lylburn Downing School
Lylburn Downing School opened here in 1927 after the Home and School League, an organization of local Black parents and citizens, campaigned for equitable schools. Built with financial support from the Black community, Rockbridge County, and the Rosenwald Fund, the countywide school first served grades 1-9 and expanded to include a high school in the 1940s. Desegregation closed the original edifice in 1965, but the newer buildings became Lexington’s middle school. Lylburn Downing (1862-1937) was born enslaved in Lexington, attended Lincoln University, and was pastor of Roanoke’s Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church for more than 40 years. He was a longtime advocate for African American education.