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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Winter Haven in Polk County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Florence Villa Training School

1924-1925

 
 
Florence Villa Training School 1924-1925 Marker image. Click for full size.
By Tim Fillmon, December 24, 2014
1. Florence Villa Training School 1924-1925 Marker
Inscription. The Florence Villa Training School for Negroes replaced an earlier African-American school built in 1916 on the corner of 2nd and Palmetto Street. By 1922 the first school was in disrepair and classes were held at the Colored Methodist Episcopal Church. Seeing the need for a permanent campus, local white physician Dr. Mary B. Jewett in March 1924 approached the Board of Public Instruction with construction plans and an offer to donate this land. Construction began in August 1924. Funding sources were as follows: Negro donations: $2,000; White donations: $11,000; Ad Valorem Taxes: $5,000; and Julius Rosenwald School Fund: $1,500. When the five-acre campus opened on December 1, 1924 the building consisted of six large classrooms, a Domestic Science Department and an auditorium. Enrollment peaked at 250 students. On the night of January 17th, 1925, a fire destroyed the school and its furnishings. The Florence Villa Town Council offered a $500 reward for information leading to the apprehension of those responsible, to no avail. This property was returned to Dr. Jewett in May 1925, and an alternate school location was chosen farther to the north.
 
Erected 2009 by The City of Winter Haven, the Polk County Historical Commission, the Jewett High Alumni Association and the Florida Department of State
Updated Florence Villa Training School Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dean Moss McCracken, March 8, 2016
2. Updated Florence Villa Training School Marker
. (Marker Number F-675.)
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Rosenwald Schools marker series.
 
Location. 28° 2.224′ N, 81° 42.995′ W. Marker is in Winter Haven, Florida, in Polk County. Marker is on Avenue O Northeast 0.1 miles east of 7th Street Northeast, on the left when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Winter Haven FL 33881, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Historic Pughsville Neighborhood (approx. 2.2 miles away); Fort Cummings (approx. 3.8 miles away); Bayard Retail Building (approx. 4.8 miles away); Patterson Retail Building (approx. 4.8 miles away); "Flatiron" Triangle Building (approx. 4.8 miles away); Auburndale City Hall (approx. 4.8 miles away); Seaboard Air Line Rail Depot (approx. 4.9 miles away); Ephraim M. Baynard House (approx. 4.9 miles away).
 
Additional comments.
1. Polk County, Florida Rosenwald Schools
This marker explains the first Rosenwald funded school to be built in Polk County, Florida. Polk County had a total of five Rosenwald Schools.

Florence Villa County Training School #1: This is the school represented by this marker. The first
Florence Villa Training School Marker image. Click for full size.
By Dean Moss McCracken, March 8, 2016
3. Florence Villa Training School Marker
Looking west on Avenue O NE,
Florence Villa County Training School was a Six-Teacher-Type school.

Florence Villa County Training School #2: This school was built in 1925-26 to replace the first school which burned, also in Winter Haven. This school no longer exists. The location was at the current location of the Jewett Academy at 601 Avenue T Northeast. The second Florence Villa CTS cost $28,450 to build. African Americans contributed $1,500, Whites; $4,000 Public funds; $22,500 and, $450 from the Rosenwald Fund. Florence Villa CTS #2 was an Eight-Teacher-Type School.


Haines City School: This school was known as the Oakland School and was built at a total cost of $18,595 in 1927-28. The Rosenwald Building Fund contributed $1,400, the remaining $17,195 came from public funds. This school was located in the Bethune Neighborhood of Haines City and was razed in 1977. The Oakland School was a Six-Teacher-Type School.

Lake Alfred School: This school was built in 1928-29 and was known as the Fruitlands Academy. This school cost $3,286 to build. African Americans contributed$600, Whites; $350, Public funds; $1,836, and $500 from the Rosenwald Fund. This school was located at the current location of the Fruitlands Park Elementary School at 690 N. 3rd Street in Lk. Alfred. The school was taken down in 1964. Fruitlands Academy was a Two-Teacher-Type school.

Bartow
Florence Villa Training School #1 image. Click for full size.
By Dean Moss McCracken
4. Florence Villa Training School #1
Photo Courtesy; Fisk University.
School:
This school is known as the Union Academy. It was built in 1929-30 at a cost of $42,756. Public funds provided $40,156 and the Rosenwald Fund contributed $2,600. This school still stands at 1795 E. Wabash Avenue in Bartow. The Union Academy is a Seventeen-Teacher-Type brick school. Note To Editor only visible by Contributor and editor    
    — Submitted May 14, 2017, by Dean Moss McCracken of Lakeland, Florida.

 
Categories. African AmericansEducation
 
Florence Villa Training School location image. Click for full size.
By Tim Fillmon, December 24, 2014
5. Florence Villa Training School location
Picture taken looking north from the marker.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on May 19, 2017. This page originally submitted on March 22, 2016, by Tim Fillmon of Webster, Florida. This page has been viewed 209 times since then and 83 times this year. Photos:   1. submitted on March 22, 2016, by Tim Fillmon of Webster, Florida.   2, 3, 4. submitted on May 14, 2017, by Dean Moss McCracken of Lakeland, Florida.   5. submitted on March 22, 2016, by Tim Fillmon of Webster, Florida. • Bernard Fisher was the editor who published this page.
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