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Waterford

Founded by Quakers in 1733, Waterford was home to many freedmen as early as the turn of the 19th Century, some of whom owed homes on Main St, near the Old Mill. They lived side by side with slave owners; the second-largest slave holder in Loudoun resided on Old Wheatland Rd west of the village. The enslaved were bought and sold on Main St. Controversially for Virginia, Waterford sided with the Union in the Civil War, establishing the Loudoun Rangers cavalry unit, which fought with the North. At least one Waterford freedman, Daniel Minor, enlisted; others joined different Union regiments. In 1866, after the war, a local Quaker sold property on Second St to “the colored people of Waterford and vicinity,” who established a one-room schoolhouse and church, which operated until 1957. Today the school is part of the Waterford Foundation’s Second Street School Living History Program for fourth grade visitors. On Bond St, African Americans built the John Wesley Church in 1892. It still stands and is slated to become a museum for the Loudoun Freedom Center.

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