For additional information, read the Nomination Form PDF
VLR Listing Date 06/20/1989
NRHP Listing Date 01/25/1991
NRHP Reference Number 90002206
Howland Chapel School, Northumberland County’s oldest schoolhouse, is a poignant reminder of the various efforts of idealistic northerners to assist with the education of the children of Virginia’s former slaves. The simple building was erected in 1867 under the sponsorship of New York educator, reformer, and philanthropist, Emily Howland (1827-1929), who came to Northumberland County at the close of the Civil War. She purchased land for African Americans to farm and taught school in a small log structure. Her classes were so popular that the present, more substantial structure, designed to serve also as a chapel, was soon erected. Miss Howland returned to the North in 1870 but supported the school financially for the next fifty years. The Howland Chapel School continued until 1958; the building has gone on to serve as a museum, community center, and adult education facility.
Many properties listed in the registers are private dwellings and are not open to the public, however many are visible from the public right-of-way. Please be respectful of owner privacy.
VLR: Virginia Landmarks Register
NPS: National Park Service
NRHP: National Register of Historic Places
NHL: National Historic Landmark
Updated: November 17, 2021