“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Foxcroft Heights in Arlington in Arlington County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)

Freedmanís Village

A New Home for African Americans

Freedman's Village Civil War Trails Marker image. Click for full size.
November 11, 2006
1. Freedman's Village Civil War Trails Marker
Inscription.  During the Civil War, many escaped and freed slaves traveled north seeking refuge in Union camps. Thousands crowded into the Federal City. The number of refugees quickly overwhelmed the areaís resources. Overcrowding and disease became prevalent. In response to the unhealthy, crowded conditions that developed in and around the District of Columbia, the federal government selected in May 1863 a site on Arlington Heights to build housing for the freed slaves.

A planned community was envisioned that would provide freed slaves with clean housing and opportunities for work, job training and education. Known as the Freedmanís Village, the community was located on a portion of the Custis/Lee Plantation, which later became Arlington National Cemetery. The village was constructed rather quickly and formally dedicated December 4, 1863. It became a model for other such communities. Eventually more than 50 two-story duplex houses, two churches, a school, a meeting hall, a hospital and a home for the aged and infirm were built around a central green space. In time, the villageís population exceeded 1,000. Though the village was intended to be
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temporary, residents stayed until the late 1890s. By 1898, Freedmanís Village officially was closed. Its residents were asked to relocate and were offered parcels of land and monetary incentives. Many remained in the Arlington area and developed their own communities, such as Arlington View, Nauck and Queen City, among others.
Erected by Virginia Civil War Trails.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African AmericansSettlements & SettlersWar, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Virginia Civil War Trails series list. A significant historical month for this entry is May 1863.
Location. 38° 52.125′ N, 77° 4.257′ W. Marker is in Arlington, Virginia, in Arlington County. It is in Foxcroft Heights. Marker is at the intersection of South Oak Street and Southgate Road, on the right when traveling north on South Oak Street. Marker is located in Foxcroft Heights Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Arlington VA 22209, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A different marker also named Freedman's Village (here, next to this marker); Site of Arlington Chapel (approx. 0.2 miles away); Robert Edwin Peary (approx. 0.2 miles away); Matthew Alexander Henson (approx. 0.2 miles away); U.S. Coast Guard Memorial
Freedmanís Village Marker image. Click for full size.
February 9, 2008
2. Freedmanís Village Marker
Arlington National Cemetery is to the north.
(approx. 0.2 miles away); You Are Remembered (approx. ľ mile away); The Peacemaker (approx. ľ mile away); 96th Infantry Division, U.S. Army (approx. ľ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Arlington.
More about this marker. On the upper right of marker is a sketch captioned, "View of Freedman's Village, Arlington Heights, Virginia" - Harper's Weekly, May 7, 1864. On the lower right of marker are 2 diagrams captioned: Plan for headquarters building. Cartography Collection, National Archives and: General Plan for Freedman's Village. - Cartography Collection, National Archives. The marker also has a small photo captioned, Inset photo is of the contraband school - Brady Collection, National Archives.
Also see . . .  Freedman's Village. Article from National Park Service (Submitted on February 10, 2008.) 
Credits. This page was last revised on February 1, 2023. It was originally submitted on February 10, 2008. This page has been viewed 3,687 times since then and 173 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on February 10, 2008. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.

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Jul. 23, 2024