About the Project

Dr. Rainville began this project in 2001. It is supported by numerous institutions, grants, and individuals. The project exists to collect remembrances of historic black funerals, cemetery locations, and biographical information about local families. We hope to use information from gravestones to reconstruct the history of over two hundred years of African-American communities in Albemarle and Amherst Counties. While today's African American population is between 10 and 15 percent of the population, in 1860 these communities were even larger, numbering almost 50 percent of the people within the counties. The out-migration of thousands of individuals has hindered our ability to record and preserve the heritage of these black communities. We hope to contribute to this history, one individual at a time, through building a database of African-American ancestors in Albemarle and Amherst County. To contact Dr. Rainville, please click here.