Virginia Durant Young

Virginia Durant Young

South Carolina, USA
Death 2 Nov 1906 (aged 64)
Barnwell County, South Carolina, USA
Burial Fairfax, Allendale County, South Carolina, USA
Memorial ID 39044975 · View Source
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Virginia Durant Young was a journalist, novelist and leader in the women's suffrage movement in South Carolina. She was born in 1842 in Georgetown, SC, the daughter of a wealthy planter who served in the Legislature, William Wallace Durant. She married her first husband, Benjamin H. Covington, at age 16. After his death in 1879, she published a short novel, "Norma Elvery, or Outline of Life," which criticized marriage as stifling. She married Dr. William Jasper Young of Fairfax, SC, in 1880. She was an editor and owner of the Fairfax Enterprise newspaper and was the first woman elected to the State Press Association. She worked with Susan B. Anthony as a suffragist. She also lectured and worked to further the work of the Women's Christian Temperance Union. The Fairfax home of Dr. William J. Young and Virginia Durant Young now houses the Fairfax Public Library.

Augusta Chronicle, 4 November 1906
Mrs. Virginia D. Young, One of Carolina's Leading Women of the Fourth Estate, Has Been Called from Life.
Special to The Chronicle
Columbia, Nov. 3 -- Mrs. Virginia D. Young, editor of the Fairfax Enterprise, president of the South Carolina Women's Rights Association, an enthusiastic temperance advocate and for many years taking prominent parts in the State Press Association conventions, died suddenly at her home from pneumonia.

The State, 3 November 1906
Death Has Taken Mrs. V. D. Young | State Press Association Loses Beloved Member | Illness Was Very Brief
She Was Editor of The Fairfax Enterprise and a Great Champion of Women's Rights | Special to The State
Fairfax, Nov. 2 -- Mrs. Virginia Young, editor of The Fairfax Enterprise, and president of the South Carolina Woman's Rights association, died here this afternoon at 5 o'clock after a brief illness of pneumonia.

Mrs. Virginia Durant Young
The news of the death of Mrs. Virginia D. Young was received with sadness in the office of The State last night, and with equal sadness will it be given to the people of South Carolina. Mrs. Young was a woman of large soul and in her love for womankind she devoted her whole life to certain principles in which she firmly believed.

She first entered the public service of her sex in the capacity of an officer of the Woman's Christian Temperance union. Then she became a contributor to the columns of the Hampton Guardian, conducted by Col. McSweeney, afterwards governor. She was given a regular temperance department in that paper.

Subsequently she organized the Fairfax Enterprise, a newspaper devoted to promoting woman's rights, correcting the wrongs done woman, and the advancement of good fellowship among all mankind. Mrs. Young was a tireless worker and a writer of fluency, ease and grace. Two or more extended stories in the form of romance bear her name, and have entertained and pleased thousands. Her newspaper style was entirely professional and gave dignity to her efforts to uplift the cause of woman.

While hers may have been a masculine mind, hers was truly a woman's heart. She was full of sentiment--though far from being sentimental--and her life was one of love for all mankind. The home of Dr. and Mrs. Young a Fairfax was never closed to the stranger, the back of her hand was never offered to the needy. All found a true Southern welcome under her roof.

She was an advocate of law and order and for the education of woman whe strove with a vigor which her frail body did not seem to possess. Her printing office was operated and managed by her women, her whol life was for other women, and the work that she has done will ever be an inspiration to those of her sex who think as she shouth, but have not the great courage, the soul unafraid which tenanted the frail body of Mrs. Virginia D. Young.

She was a great pet at the gatherings of the State Press Association. At every meeting she was called upon to read an address, and at several banquets she was asked to respond to toasts, and she did so in a gracious manner.

At the meeting at the Isle of Palms during the summer just closed, she read her reminiscences of the State press. This paper will be printed in the regular proceedings of the association and will be cherished by its members.

A great heart, a virile mind, and a sweet and gentle spirit has passed from the ranks of South Carolina journalism.


A sculpted figure was erected in the memory of Virginia Durant Young in Fairfax Cemetery, Fairfax, Allendale County, SC. The inscriptions on the monument read:

"Virginia Durant. Devoted Wife of Dr. W. J. Young. November 2, 1906. Warm summer sun, shine kindly here, Warm southern wind, blow softly here, Green sod above, lie light, lie light, Good night, dear heart, good night, good night"

"Justice and Liberty was her aim, The products of her fertile brain, Will live and reproduce fair fruit again."

"Standing for truth and human rights, she heralded the new day out of the night.

"She climbed the heights and held aloft the torch of liberty for her sex."

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  • Created by: Farnitano
  • Added: 3 Jul 2009
  • Find A Grave Memorial 39044975
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Virginia Durant Young (10 Mar 1842–2 Nov 1906), Find A Grave Memorial no. 39044975, citing Fairfax Cemetery, Fairfax, Allendale County, South Carolina, USA ; Maintained by Farnitano (contributor 46851392) .