The Martinsville Bulletin recently highlighted the story of the Blue Ridge Mission School, a school spearheaded in northern Patrick County by the Blue Ridge Baptist Association and Virginia Baptists in the early 20th century.
A nearby tragedy highlighted the need of education in the Appalachian region. The Bulletin reports:
Locally, the effort to increase educational opportunities was spearheaded by Dr. J.P. McCabe of Martinsville, who was moderator of the Blue Ridge Baptist Association, consisting of Baptist churches from both Patrick and Henry counties at the time. He persuaded the association to petition the Virginia Baptist Mission Board to support a school in the area. After long negotiation, the Mission Board agreed to the proposal if a community could be found that would supply the site for the school and put up the necessary buildings.