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Joseph P. Evans

Member From: 1871 - 1873

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  • Birth Date: January 5, 1835 Birth Place:Dinwiddie County, Virginia
  • Death Date: May 16, 1889
  • Gender: Male Race: African American
  • Spouse: Josephine C.
  • Children: 10+
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  • Additional Info Links: Bio from Encyclopedia Virginia
  • Additional Info: ​Joseph P. Evans was born a slave in 1835 in Dinwiddie County and purchased his freedom in 1859. During Reconstruction, he was a prominent leader of Petersburg's African American community, serving as a delegate to the Republican state convention of 1867, and in the Virginia House of Delegates from 1871 to 1873, representing Petersburg. Mr. Evans also represented Petersburg in the Senate of Virginia from 1874 to 1875. While a member of the General Assembly, Mr. Evans backed legislation to require compulsory education and guarantee African Americans the right to serve on grand juries when one of the litigants was an African American. He also held positions as a letter carrier and as an inspector at the Petersburg customhouse. He was elected president of a black labor convention in Richmond in 1875, where he urged African Americans to organize themselves independently in politics and as workers. He ran unsuccessfully as an independent candidate for Congress in 1884. His son, William W. Evans, represented Petersburg in the General Assembly from 1887 to 1888. Joseph P. Evans died in 1889.​
  • Other Notable Service and/or Elected Offices: Senate of Virginia - 1874 - 1875
Session District District Number Party Leadership Committees
1871-1873 Petersburg Republican Counties, Cities and Towns
Privileges and Elections

*The information within this interactive and searchable application has been researched extensively by the House Clerk’s Office. As with any historical records of this age and breadth, there may be discrepancies and/or inconsistencies within records obtained from a variety of credible sources. Any feedback is encouraged at history@house.virginia.gov.

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