Furlow Grammar School, 1914, Americus

The Furlow Female College originally stood on this site and after being closed was used as the first public school in Americus, beginning in 1880. It was replaced by this structure, known as the Furlow Grammar School, in 1914.

My friend Joan Holloway shared this treasure and if I understand her correctly, this photograph is Mrs. Glenn’s First Grade class, dressed for what Joan called  “Tacky Day”. She notes she was the girl standing in the front row, with white gloves. Joan notes: I attended first and second grades at Furlow. I started after my sister was born in Savannah in October 1944. Mrs. Glenn was my teacher. Then the next year 1944-45 I was in Miss Klebe Kemp’s second grade. The summer of 1945 we moved back to Savannah. Note all the open windows-air conditioning wasn’t known back then..

We were living in Americus in Sep 1943 but the school didn’t want me to be enrolled until I “grew some more.”  The next school year my mom was expecting and we  returned to Savannah in order for my grandmother to help my mom after she gave birth to my sister.  (In those days women stayed in bed for about 30 days after they gave birth.)
I actually attended 38th Street School here in Savannah until mom and baby could safely ride the train home.  Furlow School then let me transfer in when we returned to Americus. 
Americus was a great little town.  I have lots of fond memories of living there.  We first lived at 201 East Hill Street.   My favorite thing to do there was walk barefoot in the soft red clay after a summer rain. It would be so much fun to feel soft, cool clay squishing up between my toes again!  The following day my brother and I would stand in our then hardened footprints.
I really enjoy your photos of Americus.  The Lee Street House was the second House we lived in there.  Did you know that house has 3 backyards!  During the war four families lived in it.  The Lees and Hendricks lived downstairs and my family (Thomas) and a young childless couple lived upstairs.  I think their name was Hollis.  They were crazy about my little sister and she called him “Holly.”  
Two old aunts of a well-known war reporter lived next door (to your right as you look at the house).  I remember he was married in their backyard and I watched the ceremony from a window.  It was the first wedding I ever “attended.”

Americus Historic District, National Register of Historic Places


Filed under --SUMTER COUNTY GA--, Americus GA

15 responses to “Furlow Grammar School, 1914, Americus

  1. Sara

    I would really like to know who the little girl is in this photo she is second on the left back row with flowers on her hair. There is a family resemblance.

  2. Pattie Georgia-Peach Norton

    I went to Furlow in 3rd-5th grades, 1963-66. Mrs. Morgan was the principal. She retired at the end of my 5th grade year, along with Mrs. Keaton and Mrs. McKlesky. My family lived on Forrest St. behind the school; us kids spent many many hours playing on the playground. It breaks my heart to see this beautiful building in such disrepair.

  3. Rebecca Norton

    I went to furlow in the 60s….do they have pictures of the inside what it looks like now?..

  4. Sue McGowan Lewis

    Beth, I’d love to help with the marker you think that should be there, and still have local contacts. I’m sure there must be a local historical society there. Please contact me if you’re still interested and I’ll see what my classmates can do. We were the class of ‘60 who started at Furlow, and I feel sure we can get this to happen! Call my cell 786-205-4439 or email suemac@earthlink.net if you like. Thanks!

  5. tarobinsonsr

    Some great, old, and neat finds in Americus..and lots of interesting, local history to accompany. Unfortunately, Fitzgerald’s own old high school and hospital landmarks are no longer around.

  6. Beth F Usry

    Furlow College was also used as a Confederate Hospital during the war Between the States, Braggs Hospital
    I’ve been trying to get someone to put a brown Ga history marker there. I have a write up I sent to Atlanta but the person I was corresponding with said she could not help me. This was a female college, the first public school in Americus and the building standing there as seen many of us going to school there. I’m 83 and went there first and second grade and 4 of my children went to school there. There should be a history marker there.

  7. Sharon Rice

    Americus sounds like a community that cares about their history and
    preservation of their historic buildings.

  8. Sue McGowan Lewis

    I went to school at Furlow from first grade through grade 6 back in the 40’s and it was wonderful. I still keep track of classmates there and shared this, along with all the great photos of the lovely Victorian homes in Americus you posted. I lived in one of them on Rees Park, which I believe was built by same architect or family as the historic Windsor Hotel in downtown Americus. Thanks for these great photos!
    Sue McGowan Lewis

    • Joan Thomas Holloway

      Sue, I also attended Furlow. I was in Mrs Glenn’s first grade in 1944-45 and in Miss Cleve Kemp’s second grade, 1945-46. My dad was employed by the Seaboard Airline Railroad. My family returned to Savannah the Summer of 1946. I still have a cardboard elf that someone made for the students (can’t remember which year). He wears a little red hat and vest made of a cotton material. I honor it with a place on my tree every year since. I tell by grandchildren he was the first generation Elf on the Shelf! Do you remember Tacky Day and buying War Bonds and Stamps?

      Brian, I always enjoy your photos. I thank God for your talents and time.

      • Joan Thomas Holloway

        Brian, please correct the spelling of Miss Clebe’s name. Spell checking changed the “b” to a “v.” Thanks

      • Sue McGowan Lewis

        Hi Joan, and sorry we missed each other at Furlow! I started first grade in ‘48 or ‘49, so I missed the war bonds and stamps but do remember being talked about and seeing the leftover ones in the house back then from earlier years, before I started to school. My first grade teacher was Miss Snyder, and she was wonderful and patient. In second grade I had a Mrs. Lewis, and older lady, and after that the names are lost to me. I have family in Savannah historically and even some now, my oldest, her husband and two daughters, near Armstrong College in Windsor Forrest area. Like you I’m grateful for this site and alway eager to see the pictures as I have history in so many areas of Georgia, a wonderful state indeed. We were, and still are, blessed! Happy New Year!

      • Gloria Stevers Baker

        Mrs. Glenn was my first grade teacher also! Such fond, warm memories at Furlow Grammar!

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