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Midway in Liberty County, Georgia — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

S.C.L.C. and the Voter Education Program 1962-1970

Dorchester Academy

— Museum Of African American History —

 
 
S.C.L.C. and the Voter Education Program 1962-1970 marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Mike Stroud, July 2008
1. S.C.L.C. and the Voter Education Program 1962-1970 marker
Upper right hand corner label reads: This sign was made possible through the financial support of the City of Flemington with great places to "stay" in Liberty County.
Inscription.  
Citizenship Schools

Dorchester Cooperative Center played a key role in the struggle for civil rights and the vote.

In 1954, Septima Clarke, a school teacher from Charleston, SC and Esau Jenkins, a farmer and school bus driver from Johns Island, SC, were on the forefront of grassroots efforts to make voter registration a reality. With the support from the Highlander Folk School, they devised a plan to help rural adults to pass literacy and citizenship tests.

The first Citizenship School, known as the Progressive Club, was established on Johns Island, SC. But in 1961 control of the Citizenship School Program was transferred from Highlander Folk School to the American Missionary Association who acted on the behalf of the Southern Christian Leadership Council. The Citizenship School moved its headquarters to the Dorchester Community Center.

The Citizenship Education Program operated at Dorchester from 1961 to 1970. During that period, 897 Citizenship Schools were established, SCLC leadership planned their Birmingham demonstrations.

Leadership

Septima Clarke supervised
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instruction at Dorchester; Andrew Young administered the program; and Dorothy Cotton served as a "cultural emissary" and used music and folklore to generate interest in the program. During their tenure at Dorchester, Clare, Young and Cotton drove all over the South recruiting prospective students. Students were bused to Dorchester for a week-long training program that began on Monday morning and ended after a Saturday night banquet. The program was designed to get participants home in time for church so that they could then share what they had learned at Dorchester with others, and hopefully, establish citizenship classes in their own communities.
 
Erected 2004 by City of Flemington.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African AmericansCivil RightsEducation. A significant historical year for this entry is 1954.
 
Location. 31° 48.047′ N, 81° 27.927′ W. Marker is in Midway, Georgia, in Liberty County. Marker can be reached from East Oglethorpe Highway (U.S. 84) near Lewis Frasier Road. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 8787 East Oglethorpe Highway, Midway GA 31320, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 10 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Working Together at the Dorchester Cooperative Center 1930s-1940s (a few steps from this marker); Civil Liberties at Dorchester Cooperative Center 1940 - present
S.C.L.C. and the Voter Education Program 1962-1970 (detail) image. Click for full size.
2008
2. S.C.L.C. and the Voter Education Program 1962-1970 (detail)
First night of a week-long training session at Dorchester (September 1961) Pictured standing is Bernice Robertson and to her right, Septima Clarke
(within shouting distance of this marker); Elizabeth Moore at Dorchester Academy 1925-1932 (within shouting distance of this marker); New Life For Dorchester Academy 1932-1940 (within shouting distance of this marker); The Growth Of Dorchester Academy 1874 - 1930s (within shouting distance of this marker); Liberty County Citizen's Council 1946 - 1953 (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Athletic Programs at Dorchester Academy 1926-1940 (about 300 feet away); Dorchester Academy Boy's Dormitory (about 300 feet away); Dorchester Academy (about 300 feet away); We want a school, we need a Teacher 1870-1872 (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Midway.
 
S.C.L.C. and the Voter Education Program 1962-1970 (detail) image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Dorchester Academy Marker, 2008
3. S.C.L.C. and the Voter Education Program 1962-1970 (detail)
Septima Clarke with Rosa Parks at Highlander in the late 1950s.
S.C.L.C. and the Voter Education Program 1962-1970 image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Mike Stroud, July 6, 2008
4. S.C.L.C. and the Voter Education Program 1962-1970
Seen at the far left.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on July 11, 2008, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 2,561 times since then and 12 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on July 11, 2008, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. • Christopher Busta-Peck was the editor who published this page.

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Apr. 20, 2024