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Susie Gibson (1879-1949)

Born at Oak Mountain in Bedford County, Susie Gibson was the daughter of Thomas and Matilda Thompson. She earned a B.S. from Virginia State College and devoted more than forty years to the education of the county’s African American youth. For twenty-five of those years she served as superintendent of black schools, working much of that time as a supervisor paid by the Jeanes Fund. Like other Jeanes supervisors, Susie Gibson was active in her community. She served organizations such as the Bedford County Tuberculosis Association, the American Red Cross, and several county churches. Known as “a self-sacrificing woman for the betterment of the education of the youth,” Gibson’s influence was said to be “undying.” The Susie Gibson High School was named in her honor.

Courtesy of Mary Miller

4 Responses to Susie Gibson (1879-1949)

  1. Willie Claiborne Brown says:

    She was my aunt or great aunt, I’m not sure. But I remember her well. We would visit her often in Lynchburg. I remember she periodically came to my school in Bedford. She taught me sewing stiches which I still remember.
    I went to Virginia State also, and then to Oregon State University for Master’s and Ph.D. degrees. I am now a Professor Emeritus of Biology at the University of California San Diego and teach at the Yonsei University International Summer School in Seoul, Korea. I will appreciate any additional information you might have on Aunt Susie and her husband.

  2. Sacha says:

    Susie Thompson Gibson was my great-grand aunt. She was the sister of my great-grand father. Although I have vivid memories of Susie’s sister Mary, I can not recall if I ever met Susie as I would have been very young at the time.

    I am very proud to know that I am related to such a wonderful woman who seemed to have a tremendous passion for education and her community.

    • Carol Ross says:


      You undoubtedly read the comment above yours. Willie Brown is a Gibson descendant as was my late husband, his cousin. Do you know the given name of Susie’s husband? I am working on a family tree so Willie, whose mother was a Gibson, and I are anxious, among other things, to fill in the blanks.

  3. Pat says:

    Susie was my grandmother’s older sister . My grandmother was the youngest daughter of Matilda and Thomas Thompson- her name was Charlotte–she was called Lottie. Charlotte told me that Matilda’s mother was part Native American Indian and she said Matilda’s mother was named Mazara. However marriage records for Matilda Fields list her mother as Martha Martin. Can anyone help to shed some light on this? I know that Charlotte had sisters named Mary, Martha, and Naomi.

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