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ST. LUKE AND ODD FELLOWS HALL + NEW TOWN BLACKSBURG, VA Town of Blacksburg’s St. Luke & Odd Fellows Hall Webpage 93 Screenshot of New Town Webpage 94 Screenshots of Blacksburg Museum & Cultural Foundation’s St. Luke & Odd Fellows Hall Webpages 95 THE TIGER & THE TORCH Page | 68

THE TOWN OF BLACKSBURG & THE MUSEUM ROAR! R E S E A R C H “On March 28, 1905, James Anderson, John Anderson, Gordon Mills, John Rollins, Grandville Smith, and Robert Eaves met at 8:30. James Anderson proposed to the gathered members of the Tadmore Light Lodge 6184 of Grand United Order of the Odd Fellows to purchase a small lot on the corner of Gilbert and Barger streets in the center of New Town, an African American community in Blacksburg, Virginia. The price of $95.00 was agreed upon, as was the formation of a joint stock company with the Saint Francis Council of the Right and Worthy Grand Council of the Independent Order of Saint Luke. Thus began the history of what is commonly called the St. Luke and Odd Fellows Hall in Blacksburg.” “On September 30, 2004 Montgomery County Judge Grubbs, in response to a petition presented to the court, appointed Beatrice Walker, Walter Lewis, and Aubrey Mills trustees of the Odd Fellows Hall. Efforts to preserve the Hall began in 2002 but faced many obstacles before the appointment of trustees two years later. Based on extensive discussions by legacy relatives, former organization members, and interested citizens, and explorations of strategies to preserve and restore the Odd Fellows Hall, the trustees decided to donate the property to the Town of Blacksburg. The trustees made this offer to the Town with the conditions that the Odd Fellows Hall be restored and dedicated as a part of the Town's museum.” “The St. Luke and Odd Fellows Hall has strong sentimental A P P R E C I A T E meaning to the African American community and for all of Blacksburg. It reminisces of a time when the Black community was strong and selfsufficient. There were numerous Black businesses that lined Main Street, College Avenue, Progress Street, Roanoke Street and streets adjacent to Virginia Tech. Members of this community were instrumental in the successes of Blacksburg as a town and of Virginia Tech as an educational institution.” 96 “In 2009-2010 the Town of Blacksburg restored the St. Luke and Odd Fellows Hall as a museum and activity center to preserve the memories and contributions of the many families who lived in New Town. In 2012, the building became part of the Blacksburg Museum and Cultural Foundation; under its stewardship a committee is developing activities and events for the Hall.” 97 THE TIGER & THE TORCH Page | 69 O V E R C O M E R E V I T A L I Z E