NW Quadrant, West of Rock Creek, African American, Civil War Era, Female, Also of Interest

Emma V. Brown
(1840 - 1902)

3044 P St. NW, Georgetown neighborhood, DC.
Marked by an historic plaque.

Brown lived her whole life in DC, other than a few years at college in Ohio. She was a teacher and a poet.

Brown first opened a private school for African American children in her home, until DC authorized public funds to educate African Americans in segregated schools in 1864, at which time she became the first African American teacher to be hired by the DC Public School System. Her first DCPS assignment was a small public school held in the Ebenezer Methodist Church on Capitol Hill. She subsequently served as Principal of the John F. Cook School and the Sumner School, until her retirement in 1875.

Her poems were never collected into book form.


Humanities Council of Washington, "Wide Enough for Our Ambition: D.C.'s Segregated African American Schools (1807 - 1954)"