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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Gray Court in Laurens County, South Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Young’s School

 
 
Young's School Marker image. Click for full size.
By Ronald Miller, August 3, 2008
1. Young's School Marker
Inscription.
Here at Young’s School in 1915, Dr. Wil Lou Gray (1883–1984) initiated for her native county of Laurens a seven-school program of night education for adults which led to the adoption of a state-wide system and her national recognition as a tireless and effective opponent of illiteracy.
 
Erected 1984 by Young’s Community Association and Laurens County Historical Society. (Marker Number 30-5.)
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the South Carolina, Laurens County Historical Society marker series.
 
Location. 34° 40.532′ N, 82° 3.843′ W. Marker is near Gray Court, South Carolina, in Laurens County. Marker is at the intersection of Youngs Schoolhouse Road (State Highway 30-703) and Harris Bridge Road (State Highway 30-263), on the right when traveling south on Youngs Schoolhouse Road. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Gray Court SC 29645, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 10 other markers are within 8 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Veterans of Foreign Wars (approx. 4.7 miles away); Francis Rapley Owings House / Owings (approx. 5.1 miles away); Gray Court Owings Consolidated High School (approx. 5.1 miles away); Laurens County Training School
Young's School image. Click for full size.
By Ronald Miller, August 3, 2008
2. Young's School
The marker can be seen in the corner closest to the camera.
(approx. 5.8 miles away); Enoree Community Veterans Memorial (approx. 5.9 miles away); Fountain Inn Rosenwald School (approx. 7˝ miles away); Dials Methodist Church (approx. 7.8 miles away); Clayton "Peg Leg" Bates (approx. 7.9 miles away); Mrs. Emmie Fulmer (approx. 7.9 miles away); Snow Campaign Chapter Marker (approx. 7.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Gray Court.
 
More about this marker. The marker can be found on the front right corner of the building if you’re standing on Young’s Schoolhouse Road and facing the building.
 
Regarding Young’s School. This building is still in use by the surrounding community. Community events are held at this location along with it being the designated voting location in this part of the county.
 
Also see . . .
1. Young’s School. Laurens County native Dr. Wil Lou Gray conducted the first adult night classes at Young's School in 1915. (Submitted on August 4, 2008.) 

2. Wil Lou Gray Research Site. No history
Young's School image. Click for full size.
By Ronald Miller, August 3, 2008
3. Young's School
of South Carolina is complete without the story of Dr. Wil Lou Gray's dedication to the advancement of her native state. (Submitted on October 4, 2008, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.) 

3. Wil Lou Gray Opportunity School. Official website of the Wil Lou Gray Opportunity School, Columbia, SC. (Submitted on October 6, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.) 
 
Additional comments.
1. Dr. Wil Lou Gray
An excellent example of a state campaign is the work of Wil Lou Gray, who originated night schools for illiterate adults in Laurens County, South Carolina. After ascertaining that, in 1915, 608 of the county's 4,525 voters could not sign a ballot and voted by making a mark, she established sessions for adults using the Moonlight School model. The schools met on moonlit evenings during December, January, and February, when farmers were not as busy with crops and chores. Gray, her state's supervisor of rural schools, encountered strong resistance from state legislators whose fear of educating the masses, especially blacks, kept them from adequately funding adult literacy efforts in South Carolina. Gray...refused to give up. At the urging of the state Federation of Women's Clubs, the South Carolina General Assembly voted
Young’s School - Front Elevation image. Click for full size.
By Brian Scott, October 4, 2008
4. Young’s School - Front Elevation
a statewide appropriation, and the governor appointed an illiteracy commission in 1916. Called a "closet revolutionary" and public intellectual who challenged the regressive policies of southern politicians, Gray advocated a stronger government role in economic and social welfare and...demanded that her state accept financial and moral responsibility for its illiterate working-class population, black and white. South Carolina's first illiteracy commission collapsed from lack of funding, but Gray's subsequent effort resulted in a variety of programs for adults, including successful Lay-By Schools and the Opportunity Schools that still teach out-of-school youth in South Carolina. Wil Lou Gray continued the fight for literacy in her home state until her death in 1984. (Source: Cora Wilson Stewart and Kentucky's Moonlight Schools: Fighting for Literacy in America by Yvonne Honeycutt Baldwin (2006) pgs 68-69.)
    — Submitted October 6, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.

 
Categories. EducationNotable BuildingsNotable Persons
 
Young’s School - Front Porch and Marker image. Click for full size.
By Brian Scott, October 4, 2008
5. Young’s School - Front Porch and Marker
Young’s School - South Side image. Click for full size.
By Brian Scott, October 4, 2008
6. Young’s School - South Side
Dr. Wil Lou Gray (1883-1984) image. Click for full size.
By Laurens Chamber of Commerce
7. Dr. Wil Lou Gray (1883-1984)
Dr. Wil Lou Gray -<br>Receiving an Honary Doctorate<br>from Columbia College image. Click for full size.
Columbia College by Charles Israel and Elizabeth DuRant
8. Dr. Wil Lou Gray -
Receiving an Honary Doctorate
from Columbia College
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on August 3, 2008, by Ronald Miller of Gray Court, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 1,599 times since then and 89 times this year. Last updated on August 5, 2008, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on August 3, 2008, by Ronald Miller of Gray Court, South Carolina.   4, 5, 6. submitted on October 4, 2008, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.   7. submitted on October 5, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina.   8. submitted on October 6, 2009, by Brian Scott of Anderson, South Carolina. • Kevin W. was the editor who published this page.
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