Carolina School enrollment declined in 1960s

Published 1:41 am Saturday, April 8, 2017

CORRECTION TO LAST WEEK’S COLUMN: First, the principal was incorrectly identified in the 1945-1946 eighth grade group picture. The gentleman shown on the left was listed as Hugh D. Wilson, but it has been made known that it was J.A. Johnson who the principal who preceded Wilson. Also, there was a printing error that left off some of the students pictured on the back row; therefore, for clarity, the entire row is repeated here beginning left to right: Lois Flemming, Arnold Grissett, Orlando Knox, Sarah Pope Anderson, Marzelle Rabren Parrish, Winfred Stokes Terry, Geraldine Garrett Kelley, and Don Richards.

Limited information of the years of operation during the late 1950s and 1960s is known to this writer, but classes continued pretty much as usual. Many of the previously named teachers remained, and Principal Fincher was there for several years. Incidentally, B.C. Fincher was secretly referred to as “Before Christ” Fincher for his initials and since he was extremely strict. Most anyone who remembers his tenure quickly recounts how he spared no means in keeping the students and school in good order. He was regularly seen with his paddle in hand.

The accompanying two class pictures represent some of the classes in the last years of the school’s operation. One is of Mrs. Ollie Ingram’s fifth and sixth grades in 1965-1966, and the other is Mrs. Lena Mae Clary’s third and fourth grade class during the same year.

In each picture, the teacher’s cabinet is shown in the corner.

They often housed the library for that grade as well as any personal items of the teacher. On a personal note, this writer is pleased to have acquired one of these and has refinished it for use as a curio cabinet for keepsakes.

Also, popular items of the time, General George Washington’s portrait, a large world globe and the American Flag are displayed in the classrooms.

During the 1960s, the enrollment of students began to decline significantly, which required more combining of classes and other adjustments. Eventually, the seventh and eighth grades were transferred on to Pleasant Home School.

The identification of the students in the two classes pictured today is being collected at present. It is hoped that their names will be listed next week in the final column for this review of Carolina School.

Appreciation is expressed to Gordon Helms for providing the information for the above corrections. T

he two class pictures are courtesy of Ruth Jacobs Lawson and her family.

Anyone who might have any other corrections to this history or who has additional information to share is requested to contact this writer, Curtis Thomasson, at 20357 Blake Pruitt Road, Andalusia, AL 36420; 334-804-1442; or Email: