ASHBURN, Va. (AP) – A one-room, 19th-Century schoolhouse that once served black children in northern Virginia’s Loudoun County has been defaced with references to “white power” and Nazi swastikas.

The Washington Post reports that the former Ashburn Colored School building was spray-painted with the racist graffiti on Friday evening.

Students with the Loudoun School for the Gifted are working to restore the building so that it can be opened to the public as a museum.

Join The Conversation On The KDKA Facebook Page
Stay Up To Date, Follow KDKA On Twitter

The founder of the Loudoun School for the Gifted, Deep Sran, says the building had sat “unmolested” for more than 40 years until students started calling attention to its history. He tells The Post that the spray paint will need to be removed delicately to avoid causing further damage.

The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office is investigating.

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

More From CBS Pittsburgh

Get The All New CBS Local App
KDKA Weather App

Watch & Listen LIVE