Fairfax County is working to better capture, communicate and preserve the history of African Americans in the county. As part of this effort, 70 properties with historical, cultural, architectural or archaeological significance were surveyed through a Virginia Department of Historic Resources’ (VDHR) program. The results are now available in a draft report.
Residents are encouraged to review the draft survey report, submit comments online and join a March 6 virtual meeting to learn more. At the meeting, information will be provided about the survey work, what the draft report entails and how it will be used.
Additional information, including the meeting link and call-in information, will be posted online closer to the meeting date.
Public comments on the draft report must be submitted by midnight on Friday, March 24, in order to be reviewed and considered before the report is completed. The final survey report is expected to be published in late spring 2023.
The historical work aligns with our One Fairfax policy to intentionally consider equity when making policies or delivering programs and services as it provides a deeper understanding of our history and its connection to our contemporary context.
The origins of this study can be traced to the African American History Inventory, a collaborative effort between the History Commission and the Center for Mason Legacies, to capture, communicate and preserve the African American experience throughout Fairfax County’s history. The survey work builds on the African American History Inventory by identifying potential buildings or neighborhoods to be evaluated for architectural or historic significance. These districts or buildings can then be nominated to be included in Fairfax County’s Inventory of Historic Sites, the Virginia Landmarks Register or the National Register of Historic Places.
The survey covered the entire county except the Gum Springs area, which is part of a more intensive survey effort focusing specifically on this prominent African American community.