Revered Teacher Lucy Simms Selected Among 10 for Virginia Emancipation Recognition

As part of its commemoration of the 150th Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, the Virginia Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Commission will construct the Virginia Emancipation Proclamation and Freedom Monument on Brown’s Island in Richmond.  The monument will feature a 12-foot statue representing all freed slaves, and the base of the monument will list 10 African American Virginians who dedicated their lives to emancipation and freedom.  Nearly 100 individuals were nominated to be included on the base of the monument, and of those nominees, the Shenandoah Valley’s own Lucy F. Simms was selected. 

Lucy Simms was born into slavery in 1856, and grew up on a plantation near Harrisonburg.  Later, she graduated with her teaching degree and taught several thousand African American students during the course of her almost 6 decades-long teaching career.  She is known and revered as a teacher and community role model for her commitment to serving her students. 

Given her demonstrated courage and her unparalleled dedication to children and the value of education and the freedom that it can help achieve, BotkinRose and its Virginia Education Law Group proudly underwrites the Lucy F. Simms Educator of the Year Awards. These annual awards honor two truly outstanding educators serving Harrisonburg’s and Rockingham County’s public schools, reflecting the indomitable spirit of Lucy Simms.

Click here for more information on the Virginia Emancipation Proclamation Monument [please view the following press release].