Jim Blackburn headshot

Jim Blackburn

Albemarle High School

Well, we moved from Cincinnati and northern — although southern Ohio, it was considered a northern city — to Virginia, which was in the South.  So, we knew we were coming to the South, and there were different rules at play, so to speak.  And kind of had to sort of feel my way through that.  The idea of a Black high school designated as a Black high school was rather novel.  I thought it was novel and strange.  But it didn’t bother me one way or the other at that time.  Okay, I’m going to Albemarle High School.  And that was just what we were going to do.  And I knew that there were places, restaurants and that sort of thing, where they had signs up, no colored, that sort of thing that was really strange.  Even though there was, I think, some segregation within the society in Cincinnati, there weren’t signs about it.  It didn’t say, “Hey, you can’t come here.”  And in Charlottesville and in Virginia, it was right out there for everybody to see.