History of Mackey-Thompson


Mackey-Thompson Learning Center was named after two local African-American education pioneers: Wiliam H. Mackey and Augustella Yates “AY” Thompson. Richmond County High School was constructed in 1938 for the purpose of providing a secondary educational experience for AfricanAmerican students of Richmond County. While a great number of individuals made significant contribution to the construction of the facility, two persons have been remembered as community leaders in the pursuit of educational opportunities for African-American youth of that time. For those RHS alumni and citizens of that era, the names and memories of William H. Mackey and Augustella Yates Thompson hold special meaning and honor. It was their leadership and determination following the closing of the Northern Neck Academy, which compelled the locality to construct one of the first African-American high schools in this region of Virginia.


William H. Mackey

  • Richmond County High School Principal for 32 years
  • Director of Secondary Education – Albemarle County, VA
  • Superintendent of Schools – Charles City School District (2nd African-American Superintendent in Virginia) 


Augustella Yates Thompson

  • Community leader for educational opportunities for minority youth in Richmond County
  • Community organizer for efforts to finance and support construction of Richmond County High School
  • Advocated for minority educational opportunities to the Richmond County School Board
Contact Us
Mackey-Thompson Learning Center 13027 Historyland Highway
Warsaw, VA 22572
View Map & Directions
Phone: 804-333-5386
Fax: 804-333-6408