African American Schools in Meade County, KY
Between 1866 and 1870, at least two freedmen schools existed in Meade County, KY, supported by the U.S. Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands [see NKAA entry for Freedmen Schools]. One school was located in Brandenburg, the other in Haysville. Both of the school buildings were burnt down by those opposed to schools for African Americans; however, the school in Brandenburg continued in a rented building. In 1880, Edward Williams was the school teacher in Meadville [source: U.S. Federal Census].
From 1895-1897, there were nine colored schools in Meade County, with three schools held in log cabins and six in frame buildings in 1895 [source: Biennial Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, pp. 572-576]. About 200 students attended the schools during the five month school term. There was one teacher at each school: three male teachers and six female teachers. The African American teachers' average monthly salary for the school term 1896-97 was $25.72 for the males and $24.89 for the females. By 1907, the average monthly wages for the teachers at the colored schools was $24.00 [source: Biennial Report of the Superintendent of Public Schools, 1905-1907, p. 431]. In 1916, A. L. Poole was the teacher in Brandenburg, J. A. Starks at Ekron, and S. W. Starks at Sirocco [source: Proceedings of the Kentucky Negro Educational Association, April 25-28, 1916, pp. 34 & 36].
In 1923, Professor S. W. Starks was still the teacher in Sirocco, and Mr. J. A. Starks was still the teacher in Ekron [source: Proceedings of the Kentucky Negro Educational Association, April 18-21, 1923, p. 75]. Meade County would have as many as six Negro teachers during the 1920s, according to various issues of the Kentucky Negro Educational Association (KNEA) Journal. In 1931, there was a two-year high school program at the Brandenburg Colored School [source: KNEA Journal, February 1931, vol. 1, no.3 , p. 11], with seven students in the high school program, all taught by one teacher who earned $840 for the school year [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1930-1931, p. 81].
In 1940, the Negro teachers in Meade County were Anna B. Payne and John Lewis Pool, both in Brandenburg, according to the U.S. Federal Census. The Meade County Schools began to integrate during the 1956-57 school term at Meade County High School, according to the Kentucky Public School Directory, p. 442. See also Commencement Program of Meade County Colored Elementary Schools that was held at the Brandenburg Baptist Church, Brandenburg, KY, March 26, 1943.
- Brandenburg Freedmen School
- Haysville Freedmen School
- Colored Schools (9)
- Brandenburg Elementary and High School
- Guston School
- Meadville School
- Ekron School
- Sirocco School
- Zion Grove School