VCU professor is named recipient of Virginia Museum of History & Culture’s William M.E. Rachal Award

The award to Brian Daugherity is in recognition of an article documenting African American activism in Goochland County in the Jim Crow era.

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The Virginia Museum of History & Culture has named Brian J. Daugherity, Ph.D., an associate professor in the Department of History in the College of Humanities and Sciences, as a recipient of the William M.E. Rachal Award.

The award recognizes the authors of the best article to appear in its quarterly journal, the Virginia Magazine of History & Biography, which publishes articles and book reviews on a wide range of topics encompassing all periods of Virginia’s social, political and cultural history.

The article, “‘A New Era in Building’: African American Educational Activism in Goochland County, Virginia, 1911–32,” was co-authored by Daugherity and Alyce Miller, Ph.D., a professor of history at Valencia College, who is also a recipient of the award.

“In this article, Daugherity and Miller examine local efforts to increase educational opportunities for rural African Americans in the broader context of educational advocacy across the state and the South. The authors constructed this history of educational activism in Goochland County from a compelling array of county records, regional philanthropic records, and interviews they conducted with Goochland County educational activists,” the committee wrote. “By setting their study in conversation with histories of the ‘long’ civil rights movement and educational activism during the Jim Crow era, Daugherity and Miller show how one rural Black community contributed to regional and national efforts to achieve school equalization efforts in later decades.”

Daugherity said he was honored to receive the award.

“I’m honored and grateful that this research article has been recognized for its contributions to Virginia history, and I hope that this award raises awareness about the issues the article examines as well as their continued impact on the commonwealth.”

Miller and Daugherity will be giving a lecture on the article at the Virginia Museum of History and Culture on Feb. 24.