MONTGOMERY — Historian Larry L. Rowe will speak at BridgeValley Community and Technical College as part of the school’s Womxn Empowerment Series on Tuesday, Nov. 5, at 12:15 p.m. in Davis Hall Auditorium, 619 Second Ave. in Montgomery.
Rowe is an attorney, local historian and author and speaks regularly on the history of Old Malden and the heritage of the town as an early American industrial center in a mountain frontier. The area attracted Booker T. Washington’s freed slave family after the Civil War and he not only supported a woman’s right to vote, but relied on women to lead Tuskegee for the months he was away fundraising to build a school.
Rowe’s mother was also a leader in the new freed black community that created the first black middle class in the South.
A member of the West Virginia House of Delegates, Rowe served in the same role for four years followed by four years in the state Senate, which ended in 2004 when he chose not to run for re-election. He was then appointed to the state Ethics Commission for five years and served as board chair of the governors of West Virginia State University for two years before returning to the House of Delegates in 2014.
He is a native of Peterstown, Monroe County, and a graduate of West Virginia University, where he finished in the top 10 percent of his law class. He lives in Malden with his wife.
Rowe’s presentation, which is free and open to the public, will focus on his new book, “Virginia Slavery and King Salt,” which includes the empowerment of women at that time.