This article, published February 3, 1876, in the Daily Dispatch, reports on a meeting of Black leaders in Richmond planning to open a vocational school for Black children in the city. The first statewide system of free public schools in Virginia was established in 1870 after the ratification of a new state constitution. In spite of protests by African American members of the General Assembly, the system segregated Black and white students. Public schools for Black students were often small, overcrowded, and poorly equipped. In the absence of a quality public education, Black communities across the state established private schools for their children like the Moore Street Industrial School.