• The City of Richmond and Richmond Slave Trail Commission are shining a light on the story of Lumpkin’s Slave Jail, and RPS students and educators are a part of making it happen.  

    Just before Winter Break, seven RPS high school students and two RPS staff members took part in an exciting day of planning the development of the historically significant site right here in Richmond.

    During the height of the slave trade, Richmond was a key hub for the transfer, sale and exchange of enslaved peoples. Lumpkin’s Jail was the site of the many holding pens, auction houses and other resources needed to conduct the thriving business of the trade. The severe and extreme violence inflicted on enslaved people at the site led to its nickname as “The Devil’s Half-Acre.”

    The Richmond Slave Trail Commission and the City of Richmond intend to build a pavilion and slavery museum at the site. Archeological excavation of the site has turned up more than 16,000 artifacts.

    RPS had a major presence at a December 13 site planning meeting with the developers of the project and other stakeholders. Ma'Asehyahu Isra-Ul, the RPS Instructional Specialist for History/Social Science, brought three students to the meeting from Thomas Jefferson High School and George Wythe High School. Yvette Rajput brought an additional four students from the Armstrong Leadership Program at Armstrong High School.

    The students who attended were:

    From Thomas Jefferson High School, Samiya Jackson

    From George Wythe High School, Moises Caceres Suinko and Shadai Alexander

    From Armstrong High School, India Williams, Valaisha Gamble, Andre Jackson, and Corvell Poag.

    These RPS student leaders were able to provide valuable insight and feedback on the proposed plan and user experience.

    Isra-Ul said that he is continuing to seek and find more new, innovative, and integrated ways to expose students to history with real-world applications.  

    Way to go! #WeAreRPS