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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Petersburg, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

McKenney House

 
 
McKenney House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, March 29, 2009
1. McKenney House Marker
Inscription. The McKenney House was originally constructed as a residence for Mayor John Dodson in 1859. It was the residence of Confederate General William Mahone after the Civil War. The property was purchased by William R. McKenney in early 1911. The McKenney family gave the house to the City in 1923 to be used as a public library in honor of the prominent lawyer. Opened in 1924, the library was segregated for decades with white patrons allowed to use the main level and African-Americans only allowed in the basement level. In February 1960, Rev. Wyatt Tee Walker and Rev. R.B. Williams, African-American ministers, led a major sit-in at the library in an effort to desegregate the main level. That event kicked off a major sit-in movement in Petersburg and led to the appointment of Rev. Walker, of Gilfield Baptist Church, as Executive Director of Dr. Martin Luther King’s Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Several months later, the library became one of the first Petersburg institutions to be integrated.
 
Location. 37° 13.507′ N, 77° 24.134′ W. Marker is in Petersburg, Virginia. Marker is at the intersection of South Sycamore Street (U.S. 301) and Marshall Street, on the left when traveling south on South Sycamore Street. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Petersburg VA 23803, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers.
McKenney House at S Sycamore St & Marshall St. image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, March 29, 2009
2. McKenney House at S Sycamore St & Marshall St.
At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. McKenney Library (a few steps from this marker); Weddell-McCabe-Chisholm House (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Joseph Jenkins Roberts (about 600 feet away); Peabody High School (approx. 0.2 miles away); Formation of the Southern Methodist Church (approx. 0.2 miles away); Lincoln In Petersburg (approx. 0.2 miles away); Poplar Lawn (approx. 0.2 miles away); Earliest Known Public High School for African Americans in Virginia (approx. 0.2 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Petersburg.
 
Categories. African AmericansCivil RightsWar, US Civil
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 736 times since then and 56 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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