The Other Alexandria: A 160-year-old Road Map

Annie Lee Wheeler’s death certificate

Many people came to Alexandria during the civil war from Maryland, North Carolina and other parts of Virginia. Few African American families talked to their children about their lives prior to the civil war. These stories were lost and never passed down through the generations. However, one of these families who migrated to Alexandria during the civil war did share their family history with their younger generation.

Annie Lee Wheeler shared her father’s family history with her daughter, Helena Wheeler and her grandchildren, especially her granddaughter, Shirley Gilliam Sanders Steele.

Check out their story in the Alexandria Times’ newspaper dated April 14, 2022, at https://alextimes.com/2022/04/the-other-alexandria-steele/.

Behind the scenes of the article titled, “The Yesteryears of the Seminary Community.”

Left to right: Daniel G. Simms III, Carl Toms, Carla Toms, Brenda Terrell, Steven Simms & Charles Toms

The children and grandchildren of two Seminary families with the surname of Thomas and Simms got together to talk about their families from the Seminary community.

The cousins talked about how their families were raised on a lot of love and hard work. Their families left a long legacy among the descendants who raised their children on the same family principles. The Seminary community were all intermingle through kinfolks and marriages.

Steven (Steve) Simms, Charles Toms and Brenda Terrell fondly remembered their parents and grandparents of the Seminary community.

A detailed article is available in the Alexandria Times dated, November 11, 2021, titled, “The yesteryears of the Seminary community” at https://alextimes.com/2021/11/the-other-alexandria-the-yesteryears-of-the-seminary-community/.

Aaron Lamont Banks

Behind the scenes of the article titled, “A history of service”

Aaron Lamont Banks
Roscoe Banks, Sr.

Aaron Lamont Banks is very proud of the military service that his family has contributed to their County. His father, Roscoe came from humble beginnings. He was born in Danville, Virginia to Algie H. Banks and Fannie Elam.

Algie and Fannie migrated to Alexandria, Virginia after 1920. They had several children. Three of their children, Roscoe Sr., Marshall and Algie Jr enlisted in the military during World War II in 1943.

Roscoe Banks, Jr.

Roscoe Sr’s son, Roscoe Jr also went into the military. Roscoe Jr’s daughters and grandson entered the military as well.

You can find Aaron’s story in the Alexandria Times’ dated Thursday, October 21, 2021 on page 39-40. The article is titled, “A history of service.” You can read the article at

https://alextimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/ALEXT102121_FULL.pdf.

Click Family of Bethel Cemetery

James Click Jr.

Behind the scenes of the Alexandria Gazette Packet’s article on, “From West Virginia to Alexandria: Click Family of Bethel Cemetery.

The Click Family has been in the Cemetery business in Alexandria for three generations. Prior to coming to Alexandria, they were living in the foothills of McDowell County, West Virginia, working in the coalmines.

Like so many people, the Click family wanted a better life and Alexandria offered the family a better life.

Check out the Click Family’s story, “From West Virginia to Alexandria – Click Family of Bethel Cemetery”– dated June 17, 2021 in the Alexandria Gazette Packet on page 11 at http://connectionarchives.com/PDF/2021/061621/Alexandria.pdf.

%d bloggers like this: