Homepage Forums Boy Scouts (Scouts BSA) At the End of the Segregation Era: a Black Boy Scout Troop in Orange, Virginia

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    Ray Ezell

    In the mid-1960s in Orange, Virginia, public facilities and social activities were separated by color. Black children and teens were commonly excluded from the same amenities that whites freely enjoyed access to. In the realm of recreation, black children had to adapt and be creative to enjoy many of the same sports as whites. For instance, a cow pasture became a baseball field or an empty street with a home-made hoop on a pole became a basketball court. However a unifying presence in the lives of blacks in Orange was the Church. The Church provided organization and opportunity that general society did not. This was the era of Vietnam, Civil Rights, and separation in education. Traditional black sections in and around the Town of Orange were; Little Petersburg, Little Zion, Church Street, and Lindsey Drive among others. In what certainly was a reaction to the prevailing social conditions, a group of thoughtful black community members decided in the fall of 1967 to organize Orange County’s only black Boy Scout troop (Troop No. 111).

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