Mission To Save African-American “School of Hope” In Western North Carolina

Dec 3, 2014


In 1912, famed educator Booker T. Washington approached philanthropist and Sears Roebuck Company CEO Julius Rosenwald with a plan to build schools for African-American children in the South. 

Together they created a program that eventually led to the creation of 5,300 Rosenwald schools. North Carolina was home to 800 schools- more than any other state. Former students and community supporters are working to rehabilitate one of the schools in Madison County and turn it into a historical venue. A Mars Hill University's Rural Heritage museum exhibit examines the history of African-American education in Madison County from Reconstruction to Civil Rights. 

The school's current condition, but under construction.
Credit flickr.com/photos/marshillcollege

Host Frank Stasio talks with Friends of Mars Hill Anderson Rosenwald School Rehabilitation Project president, Willa Wyatt; Rural Heritage Museum director Les Reker, and Mars Hill Anderson Rosenwald School alumnae Fatimah Shabazz.

The exhibit "Our Story/This Place: The History of African American Education in Madison County, N.C." is open now through Feb. 28. The Rural Heritage Museum is open 1-5 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday and by appointment and admission is free.