Samuel Kelso

Samuel Kelso (1825-1880), the son of Virginia slaves, became one of Lynchburg’s first African American teachers. A colleague of Jacob Yoder’s, Kelso taught at the freedmen’s school on Twelfth Street and served as a trustee of the Polk Street School. In 1867-68 Kelso was elected as a delegate to Virginia’s Constitutional Convention. He introduced the state’s first resolution supporting free public schools for children of all races. Kelso was one of many southern blacks who advocated strong public schools.

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