Donny Screws writes: This is the original Chester High School, built in 1927. Rebuilt in 1929 after a tornado outbreak damaged the foundation. Many people graduated from Chester High, and when Dodge County built a consolidated High School, it became Chester Elementary School in the late 50s. I went to school there and taught there my first year, as did my wife. I have posted extensively on Chester Elementary and there is also a Chester Elementary School Page on Facebook. There are a thousand great stories to tell from that great School. Looking at that picture, every room has a fascinating history. I have tons of photos also. Good photo here. Holler if anyone wants more information.
Tag Archives: South Georgia Schools
The two-room Gaskins School is located in the Weber community. Bryan Shaw of the Berrien County Historical Society notes that it was built prior to 1908. After consolidation, a larger building was constructed adjacent to this schoolhouse and it was used as the lunchroom.
Shaw also states that the consolidated school was moved off the property when it closed, and was remodeled by Sheriff Walter Gaskins for use as his home.
I’ve always admired this unusually large wooden structure and until recently knew nothing of its history. It has been in an advanced state of decline for many years.
Harvey Williams notes that it was the elementary school (segregated) and later a coat factory, owned by Sheila Gaskins. It’s a very large school for such a small town, and may have served more grades when it was first built.
With over 43,000 cases* of the coronavirus (Covid-19) in Georgia, life as usual has been anything but since early March. One of the effects of the pandemic has been the closure of schools and much has been made of the fact that members of the Class of 2020 won’t be able to have a traditional graduation ceremony. While I’ve noticed yard signs honoring this historic class in towns all over South Georgia, I’ve seen nothing quite as memorable as this display by Appling County High School. Senior photos of each and every student have been placed on signs on the front lawn of Baxley City Hall. along busy U. S. Highway 341. I think it’s a wonderful gesture.
*-as of 25 May 2020
When word came recently that my old elementary school was being demolished, I was already expecting it but it still brought a rush of emotions. This is where I spent most of my life from the 1st through 7th grades.
I made this photograph of the school in 2010.For more photographs and a bit of history, visit the original post.
Ben Hill, like many Georgia counties, had a city and county school system well into the late 20th century. Lynwood was the county school. During my lifetime, it was officially known as Ben Hill County Elementary School.
The structure has been vacant for quite a few years and has been deteriorating.
There are dozens, if not hundreds, of old schoolhouses like this wasting away all over Georgia.
A few counties have successfully put theirs to use, but that’s the exception, not the rule.
People always ask why a place like this is torn down and not put to good use.
The answer is never simple, and can be attributed to numerous factors, including political calculations, lack of funding, and the absence of a community effort.
In the case of Lynwood, a recent explanation arose of the need for a traffic roundabout on the adjacent state highway.
I hope the roundabout makes the area safer, but I know I’ll miss my old school on the hill.
Following are interior shots made just before the deconstruction was complete.
In addition to an annex behind the original schoolhouse, the campus of the old Glenwood High School has a slightly more modern auditorium (above) built in 1951.
The original building is a one-story Spanish Mission Revival structure (not pictured due to inability to access) built in 1920; the two-story annex (above) was added between 1930-1933. In recent years, it has served as the campus for the Transitional Alternative Prep School.
National Register of Historic Places
On 17 December 2019 around 11:45 AM, an EF-2 tornado touched down near Mystic, with sustained winds up to 125 mph. It traveled northeast from Mystic into Ben Hill County, doing significant damage on Old Whitley Road, Vo-Tech Drive, Lake Beatrice and Pine Level Church Road.
The damage in Mystic was concentrated around the campus of the old Mystic High School (later known as Irwin Academy and Grace Christian Academy), which has recently been serving as a church.
The main building is still standing but sustained serious damage, especially to the roof. Hopefully, it can be saved.
Other structures on the property didn’t fare as well and will likely have to be razed.
Most of the focus now is on cleanup and an amazing amount of work has been done in the week since the tornado.
After a long history of operating substandard schools for African-Americans, Georgia began building modern schools for black students in the early 1950s. This effort to delay desegregation was a knee-jerk response to Brown v. Board of Education, and while the state spent a small fortune building these schools, desegregation was a done deal and implemented fully by the early 1970s. Many of these schools still stand throughout Georgia.