Johns Memorial Episcopal Church/Gordon Moss Home

Introduction

When small groups of African-American students attempted to attend services at four downtown Farmville churches to integrate the traditionally white houses of worship on Sunday, July 28, 1963, Johns Memorial, built in 1882, was the only one into which they were admitted. Gordon Moss, the chief academic officer at Longwood College, invited the protesters to sit in his pew. One of only a few prominent, outspoken white voices against the closing of public schools, Moss's opposition incurred social and professional costs to his family and himself, including his leadership role at Johns Memorial. Moss's home was located a block northeast at the current site of Bicentennial Park.

Photo: Longwood Archives


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