PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WVEC) -- A historical highway marker honoring I.C. Norcom High School's namesake, Israel Charles Norcom, was unveiled on Friday morning.

Norcom was an African-American educator and administrator who served Portsmouth schools for more than 30 years.

A ceremony was held in the school's auditorium, and it featured speeches from several people who were instrumental in working with the school system and the Virginia Department of Historic Resources to secure the marker.

Congressman Bobby Scott also spoke at the event.

"We are making sure that everyone learns the history of I.C. Norcom, so we can benefit and build on that history," Scott said. "He was obviously a businessman, a civics leader, and is best known for his support of education."

A school with I.C. Norcom's name first opened in 1920. The school then kept the name with every new building.

I.C. Norcom High School has been an integral part of the African-American community in Portsmouth. In the 1960's, students from the school held sit-ins to desegregate Portsmouth lunch counters, and alumni have served as local, state and national leaders.