The Heart of Gainsboro

The Heart of Gainsboro, a project of Berglund Center to address the neighborhood devastation at the core of urban renewal, was dedicated on February 15, 2023. Historian in Residence Jordan Bell and Art Matters Grantee Bryce Cobbs worked with Berglund Center General Manager Robyn Schon to create the community conversations and engagement at the heart of the effort.

The project has three components:

1. The creation of artwork that honors the elders of the neighborhood. Featured in the mural are Charles Price, Kathleen Ross, Carolyn Hubbard, Sherwood Kasey, Joe Simms, Jelly Riles and Brenda Randolph.

This was created by Cobbs and developed through an intentional listening process guided by Cobbs and Bell.

2. The naming of three parlors in Berglund Hall. Parlors A, B, and C, are now the Ross room, named for

  • Mrs. Kathleen Ross lived on a property at the site and held out against the City as long as she possibly could.
  • Mr. David L. Ramey, Sr.‘s family was relocated from “Tanktown”. Mr. Ramey was a prolific artist and documenter of Roanoke and the lost neighborhood. Learn more about Mr. Ramey here.
  • Mr. Richard Chubb, a native Roanoker and longtime teacher, coach, and guidance counselor, Mr. Chubb is recognized for his leadership and the many lives he has touched. Hear a Roanoke Public Libraries oral history with Mr. Chubb here.

PRESS & more information

Dedication Program
Roanoke Times
Roanoker Magazine