The Oak Grove Heritage Committee is reaching out to you for your assistance to help us save The Oak Grove School in Gallion, Alabama. The school was built in 1925 as one of the over 5000 schools built in 13 southern states to provide a haven and equipped school to allow Black children in the south to obtain a quality education. The Educators that dedicated their lives to teaching the children at the Oak Grove Rosenwald School were Principals: Marie Carrington Jones, and Dorothy Agnes Scott. The teachers were: Louise Garrett, Rebecca Mattie Agnew Burks, Roxanna Garrett Dawson, Renona Crawford Martin, Elnora Wilson Barnfield Henderson, Lois Penny Stokes, Willie Glover Love, Eunice Beard and Roslyn Worthy Bennett. The Oak Grove School is at the center of our history. All our ancestors that migrated to Hale County helped to build this school with the limited funds that they had. Many of our ancestors, including many still living today attended The Oak Grove School before it closed its doors in 1968. The Oak Grove School is still standing for over 94 years but is in dire need of repairs.  As of today, there are only a few of these schools still standing and only two remaining in Hale County.
Several members in the Oak Grove Community devoted years to get the Oak Grove School added to the National Historical Register and on March 3, 1998 the school was added. The Oak Grove School was also placed on the Alabama Bureau of Tourism. The school was removed from the Bureau of Tourism when the community could no longer keep up the school, but visitors still come to tour the school.
Residents in communities across the South have dedicated themselves to saving Rosenwald Schools in their communities so that an important part of our history will not be lost. Oak Grove is fortunate to have one of these schools. We have formed a committee to drive the initiative to save Oak Grove School, but we cannot do it without the help of individuals and corporations.
The Oak Grove Church has overseen the school for years but agreed this year to relinquish the upkeep of the school to the Oak Grove Heritage Committee. The committee has created a board, who are actively seeking grants to make the necessary repairs through The National Trust for Historic Preservation. The grants are very competitive and over 400 agencies applied for 47 million dollars in grants from the foundation this year. In January, 2019 we presented a strong letter of intent to The National Trust but we were not awarded the opportunity to move to the second round of the grant provider process. We received feedback from the foundation that we need to aggressively seek donors in both the public and private sectors to prove to future grant providers that we have the capability to raise funds and support the school long term. We will continue to apply for grants but we need the help of our family, friends and corporate donors to help us raise a substantial amount of the money to move forward with the renovations.
We have secured a blueprint of the renovation and a preliminary cost of what it will take for us to make the renovations and open the doors one again of this historical building. The School will reopen as a museum and a community center for Oak Grove community and surrounding communities.
We will be hosting on Saturday October 26, 2019 a pre – renovation day so that family, friends, community leaders and corporate donors can tour the school to see what our vision is for the future of the school.  We hope that some of you can join us for this event.
We are asking that if you know of anyone that is related to the teachers that taught at Oak Grove School please reach out to them so that they can be a part of saving Oak Grove Rosenwald School.
The Oak Grove School Heritage Center has officially begun it's Clean Up Project. The project will consist of three Phases.

Phase One - Clean up has begun on the outside and inside of the school. Large items such as old cooling and heating units have been removed from the site along with other debris. This process will be completed ahead of the June 22 location meeting.

Phase Two - Board Members will meet on Saturday, June 22, 2019 to make a determination of which items located in the school will be kept to place back in the school museum once renovations have been completed.

Phase Three - Board Members, Corporate and Individual donors, Volunteers and Community Leaders will meet to have an "Oak Grove School Heritage Center" Pre-renovation Day on October 26, 2019. Updates regarding this event will be posted on this web page and announced on the local radio station. 

Once all three phases have been completed, the Board will announce it's offical "Oak Grove School Heritage Center Renovation Project" start date. This process will continue until the renovation has been completed  and re-opened to the public as a Community Center and Museum.

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