November Launch of our Official Newsletter


Greetings from Christiansburg Institute,

We have the utmost honor of announcing 'The Echo', the official newsletter of CI, Inc! 'The Echo', previously called 'The CII Echo' was a student-run newspaper written and printed at Christiansburg Industrial Institute beginning in the 1930s.

Our team has worked hard to honor the historical integrity and spirit of 'The Echo' and its original purpose: a school news source for students and the surrounding community highlighting the good work of the Institute and the relevant topics of the time.

Today, the newsletter will serve a similar purpose - as a media tool to promote Christiansburg Institute; it's 100-year history as premier African American high school, our grassroots driven nonprofit work today in Southwest Virginia, and the relevant cultural and social topics across the Appalachian South related to African American history, life, and education.

We dedicate our November issue of 'The Echo' to Edgar Allen Long and Anna Lee Patterson Long, two deeply beloved principals, educators, and relentlessly dedicated innovators committed to the prosperity of Christiansburg Institute out of a fierce love for their people and education.

On behalf of Christiansburg Institute, we hope you enjoy!


Christopher B. Sanchez,

CI, Inc. Executive Director

Debbie Sherman-Lee,

Board President

Christiansburg Industrial Institute


The Christiansburg Industrial Institute (1866-1966) was the first high school in Southwest, Virginia, to educate the formerly enslaved. The school served African American students from across the state of Virginia and beyond for 100 years. Booker T. Washington was supervisor to the school from 1896-1915, modeling the curriculum after Tuskegee and Hampton Institute.

Today, Christiansburg Institute, Inc. (CI, Inc.) and the Christiansburg Institute Alumni Association (CIAA) work together to honor the Institute's 100-year legacy of African-American education and empowerment through storytelling, community outreach and education, and historic preservation.

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Preserve.     Educate.     Empower.

Christiansburg Institute (CI, Inc.) is a 501(c)(3) cultural heritage and historic preservation non-profit located in Christiansburg, Virginia with a mission of education and empowerment. CI, Inc. is managed by a 15-member Board of Directors and operated by it's Executive Director. CI, Inc. was created by the Christiansburg Institute Alumni Association (CIAA) in 1996.

Our mission to preserve and promote the historic Christiansburg Industrial Institute through enacting its legacies of education, service, and excellence.

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What We Do

Community.      Education.     Preservation.

Our work at CI, Inc. is centered around grassroots community organizing, participatory education and inter-generational learning, and the historic preservation of the Edgar A. Long Building. We celebrate life, ancestors, tradition, art, music, food, and culture through programs, events, and Restorative Memorymaking.

We work diligently to

honor ancestors and cultural heritage,

intentionally center directly affected voices,

and build people power through grassroots community organizing and historic preservation.

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Historic Preservation
& Adaptive Reuse

Edgar A. Long Building

The historic Edgar A. Long Building represents the only 2% of African-American historic sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Help us save and restore this rare national treasure.

Christiansburg Institute Museum & Archives

Protecting CI's Material Culture

Preserving the expansive material culture and thousands of historic artifacts from Christiansburg Industrial Institute's impressive 100-year history


& Community 


Reclaiming Ancestral Knowledge

Sharing the remarkable story and 100 year history of Christiansburg Institute in Southwest Virginia through celebrating our cultural heritage, inter-generational learning, and Restorative Memorymaking


  • Virtual Mural Contest
    Mon, Jun 22
    Virtual Mural Contest
    Jun 22, 2020, 7:00 PM – Jul 11, 2020, 11:00 PM
    Virtual Mural Contest
    Show your creativity and celebrate the Edgar A. Long building's roof renovation by designing a mural about the history of C.I.!


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