South Georgia College Administration Building, 1892, McRae

old south georgia college administration building mcrae ga photograph copyright brian brown vansihing south georgia usa 2009

South Georgia College began operations in January 1893, a result of an educational initiative by the South Georgia Conference of the Methodist Church. (The school never had any assocaition with the present South Georgia College, in Douglas). Reverend W. A. Huckabee served as the first president. Although called a college from the outset, the institution actually offered various levels of instruction, from grammar and high school, to two years of college for students inclined to further their educations. The college closed in 1928, when the Methodist Church withdrew their financial backing. The campus was sold to the local school district and this structure served as the high school until the 1960s when it became a primary school. It’s now home to the Telfair Center for the Arts.

National Register of Historic Places


Filed under --TELFAIR COUNTY GA--, McRae GA

16 responses to “South Georgia College Administration Building, 1892, McRae

  1. Yolanda

    Just like everything else in that horrible town. Anything good never stays.

  2. Linda Chatham

    My mother, Mary Edith Jones born in 1920 was the niece of Alma L. Wright. Ms. Wright lived on the corner facing the Golden Isle Hwy down the street from the school building (there is a small bank there now). She taught until her retirement and was a substitute teacher after her retirement. She passed away in 1993.

  3. Brian Greene

    My aunt, Margaret Greene, attended South Ga. College at McRae. She loved to sing and was Miss Cherry Blossom in an operetta at the college. Brian Greene, Valdosta, Ga.

  4. Steve

    This good gentleman and war hero is the son of an early president of this college. see more here.

  5. Jimmie Hatch Batchelor

    My grandfather, Mason Pullen, graduated from South GA College when it was in this building. He lived in dorms across the street that later became apartments that were there when I was growing up.

  6. Carolyn Dobbs Wilson

    This was McRae-Helena High School until Telfair Co. High School was built. The first graduation of TCH was 1960. I had 7th grade class on the lower right of the building in 1958. The Elementary School was to the left of the building and is now gone. I think Lynn is remembering the metal fire excape on the Elementary School. When we asked to go to the bathroom, we asked to go to the basement. You had to go outside and down stairs to the restrooms located in the basement of the building. There is a painting in the McRae library of Old South Ga College that shows a little of the Elementary School

  7. Frank Golson

    Thanks so much for the wonderful pictures you have compiled of McRae. I grew up in Macon, but was fortunate enough to have had grandparents who lived in McRae. It’s a pleasure to be able to see these beautiful old buildings again and the fact that they are being appreciated. This is truly a special town and I will always cherish the friends I made there and the memories that you have rekindled.
    When my grandfather died in 1995, several people at the funeral commented that they were blown away by the number of beautiful homes and old buildings

  8. Lynn Johnson Winters

    I remember sliding down the metal fire escaape tunnel – it was segmented, with rivets holding the sections together – and tearing my crinoline petticoat. All little girls wore dresses to school then.

  9. A GEORGIA HISTORY TEXTBOOK has an OLD … SOUTH GEORGIA COLLEGE in Thomasville, with an engraving of it, CA 1878-1884, the book is at the library in BLAKELY GA. It would be worth your visiting there and checking it out. Phone them first, as it was about 25 years ago I saw it. It got me going on a project I call FORGOTTEN HISTORY, that is a collection of what is deleted from history books from edition to edition, to keep them short enough to be covered in 180 school days.

  10. Judy Stevenson Thompson

    Yes, Jane, I recall that building vividly. I went to 1st-3rd grades in that building, and that’s where I had such good teachers that I developed a love for learning, as corny as that might sound. Teachers were Mrs. Lois Smith, Mrs. HennieLou Geiger, and Mrs. Doris Mountjoy, respectively. As I recall, we entered the fire escape from Mrs. Mountjoy’s room and were allowed to go down it when we’d been especially good. Remember that Mr. Hancock kept coal shoveled into the furnace, and he’d be at the bottom to be sure we got out alright? I remember Mr. Hatten very well, both from the school and as choir director at First Baptist; wonderful man! My sister, Frankie Stevenson, went to high school in the building pictured, and I recall some kind of production they did when they sang “Candy Kisses” and threw candy out to the audience. I attended her graduation there in 1957 wearing a yellow dotted-swiss dress, black patten-leather shoes with white socks, and a whelp on my arm where my mother swatted me good for sassing her. And I could go on-and-on. Wonderful days. Yes, we played outdoors almost all the time, and we had very few really chubby kids.

    • Ron Monroe, Sr.

      Jane, I read your comments back in January, and had researched a short story about the fire escape written by one of your classmates, Thomas Monroe. The article is too long for this writing, but it can be found in the archieves of The Telfair Enterprise – Wednesday May 20, 1998. I hope you can find and enjoy the article. I believe it is titled “The Evil Eye”

  11. I remember John Hatten, math teacher and choir director, trying to teach many of us to sing on the stage in this building. Does anyone remember that there used to be another large building that stood to the left of this building? It had a huge, round metal slide/tunnel fire escape attached to the top floor that was great fun to play in when school was out. It was supposed to be off-limits, but these were the days when kids actually played outside all day with no supervision, and we were experts in finding creative ways to entertain ourselves.

  12. Brit Spann

    Mrs. Ridley taught me to spell in th classroom on lower left. It was the Senior Home Room.

    • Thanks for sharing, Brit. I miss the teachers from those days, who put learning first! This is such a wonderful old place, and so full of memories, I’m sure.

  13. It’s good to see this beautiful Italianate building hasn’t gone to ruin.

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