Savannah in Chatham County, Georgia — The American South (South Atlantic)
Massie Common School House
Savannah's Cradle Of Public Education
Massie School is the only remaining building of Georgia's oldest chartered school system. Constructed in 1855-56 and opened for classes on October 15, 1856, the Greek Revival building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Peter Massie, a Scottish planter in Glynn county, Georgia, in 1841 bequeathed $5,000 "for the education of the poor children of Savannah." This donation was invested "until a large enough sum could be accumulated to build a school."
In 1855, the City retained John S. Norris to design and build Massie School. The center portion, costing %9,000 is the original structure. The west wing was built in 1872 from plans by John B. Hogg, and in 1886 the east wing was erected.
The building was used briefly as a hospital by Federal troops after Sherman's occupation of Savannah in December, 1864. Beginning May 1, 1865, it was operated for a few months as a school for the Freedmen, with teachers from the American Missionary Association.
Massie School became a unit of the Savannah-Chatham County Board of Public Education when that body was established in 1866. It was closed to regular classes in June, 1974, having educated Savannahians for 118 years.
Erected by Board of Public Education for the City of Savannah and the County of Chatham.
Location. Touch for map. Located in Calhoun Square, on Abercorn Street between Taylor and Gordon Streets. Marker is at or near this postal address: 207 East Gordon Street, Savannah GA 31401, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Wesley Monumental United Methodist Church Centennial (within shouting distance of this marker); Wesley Monumental United Methodist Church (within shouting distance of this marker); Congregation Mickve Israel (about 600 feet away, measured in a direct line); Marist Place (about 700 feet away); Flannery O'Connor Childhood Home (about 700 feet away); Casimir Pulaski (about 800 feet away); Colonial Dames House (approx. 0.2 miles away); Andrew Low House (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Savannah.
Regarding Massie Common School House. Now known as the Massie Heritage Center, this school was housed in three nineteenth-century Greek Revival buildings on Calhoun Square and served as Savannah's first public school from 1856 until 1974.
Categories. • Charity & Public Work • Education • Notable Buildings •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on February 18, 2008, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 2,043 times since then and 38 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on February 18, 2008, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.