Marker will honor Forrester

Published 10:47 am Tuesday, April 11, 2017

FARMVILLE — A new highway marker is set to be erected in Farmville in honor of late civil rights activist Martha E. Forrester.

According to a press release from the Virginia Department of Historic Resources (DHR),  Forrester (1863-1951) helped establish the Council of Colored Women in 1920. Forrester acted as the organization’s president for 31 years, during which time she led campaigns “to improve educational opportunities for African-American students in Prince Edward County, securing a longer school term and higher-level courses,” according to a press release.

According to the release, Forrester also played a critical role in getting the first black high school built built in 1939, named for educator Robert Russa Moton.

The Council of Colored Women was later renamed the Martha E. Forrester Council of Women in her honor, and helped establish the Moton Museum to interpret the history of civil rights education, according to the release.