What A Wonderful Childhood: Frances Colbert Clements Terrell

This is my fourth story about African Americans living in the Seminary area. I look forward in writing more articles about African Americans who lived, worked and raised their children in Alexandria.

Before Seminary/West End was incorporated into Alexandria, it was part of Falls Church in Fairfax, Virginia. The African Americans who lived in that area had a unique life compared to the African Americans in the City of Alexandria. Many of their families owned their own property. They were self-contained as far as their own school, their stores, their churches and their culture.

The City of Alexandria was indeed a City but the Seminary community prior to becoming incorporated into Alexandria was considered rural. In all appearances, Seminary was a farming community with livestock.

Frances Colbert Clements Terrell had a wonderful childhood growing up in the Seminary area of Alexandria. You can read more about her childhood life in the Alexandria Gazette Newspaper dated April 29, 2020 on page 6 and 7, titled “What A Wonderful Childhood: Frances Colbert Clements Terrell” at

Click to access Alexandria.pdf

Clifton D. Wanzer: The View from the Air Traffic Controllers’ Tower

Clifton D. Wanzer

Clifton D. Wanzer is the oldest son of Daniel Wanzer and Viola Williams. He grew up in the Seminary (West End) of Alexandria, Virginia. A great deal of Clifton’s life has been in the years of segregation, but that period did not stop him for sketching out a better life for himself and his family.

Clifton D. Wanzer
1950s Air Force –
Air Traffic Controller

Although Clifton does not know whether he was the first Alexandrian African American to be an Air Traffic Controller, but it is clear that he was one of the first from his home town to have a view from the Air Traffic Controller’s Tower.

You can read more about Clifton D. Wanzer in the Alexandria Gazette newspaper on page 11 dated February 5, 2020 at
http://connection.media.clients.ellingtoncms.com/news/documents/2020/02/05/Alexandria.pdf. Also you can read on page 10 a letter to the editor from Frances Burton.

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