Clover Black School, Halifax County 8
Image by Universal Pops (David)
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This is a Rosenwald School, the Clover Black School near Clover in Halifax County, Virginia. Julius Rosenwald (1862-1932), one-time president of Sears, Roebuck and Co., was well-known for his philanthropic endeavors; he established the Julius Rosenwald Fund in 1917, which donated millions of dollars to black colleges, black hospitals, black YMCAs and YWCAs and other black institutions. The most visible of the endowments was in the creation of the "Rosenwald schools", 5357 schools established for rural black youth throughout the Southern states at a time when public education difficult to obtain. The schools were not large and the faculties were small as well; but ultimately the schools employed over 14,000 teachers. The funding was discontinued in 1932; the Fund felt that responsibility for maintaining the schools should public responsibility. The Rosenwald Fund epitomizes all that is right in corporate citizenship and responsibility.
The 1-story wood frame structure was built in 1921-1922 and is virtually unadorned. Covered with weatherboarding, the building rests on brick piers. Originally it was to have four rooms with three teachers. Front the front, the school appears cruciform in shape, but the design doesn't hold up on the left side, the wall going straight back to the end of the structure. A tin roof covers the school. The entrance is in the front gable and from the shadow lines on the wood, it's possible there was a porch at one time. Wooden double doors surmounted by a transom constitute the entry. One chimney is visible, and possibly there was only this one source of heat. Windows are in terrible condition; as in most school architecture they were arranged in banks in order to capture the daylight. Most likely there was no electricity to the structure. Today this building is abandoned and in a state of deterioration that is alarming. Preservation Virginia recently has included this property as one in need of saving.
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