From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

African American Schools in Calloway County, KY

In 1886, there were eight colored school districts in Calloway County, according to the Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, school year ending June 30, 1886 and June 30, 1887, p.125. In 1895, there were 6 colored schools and in 1896, there were 7 [source: Biennial Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, 1895-1897, pp.267-271]. The schools were in session 5 months of each year. Two of the schools were held in log buildings and the remainder were held in frame structures. The average attendance was 169 students taught by 7 teachers 1895-96, and 195 students taught by 8 teachers 1896-97. The colored schools are also mentioned in Waylan F. Rayburn's thesis History of Education in Calloway County, Kentucky. On p.49 of Rayburn's thesis, there is a breakdown by year, 1892-1917, the value of the school houses and grounds, and the furniture and apparatuses.

In 1925, there were three colored schools in the county and one in the city, each school had one teacher [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1925-1926, p.67 & p.69]. The Negro teachers in 1940 were Ruth Keys, Ione Finsley, Madge Green, Elizabeth King, Jessee McGeehee Jr., Sarah Sleet, and Fanny Willis [source: U.S. Federal Census]. In 1941, there were two colored schools in the county, still with one teacher at each school, and in Murray, there was a graded school and a high school [source Rayburn, p.60]. In 1946, the three colored schools are identified as Buffalo Graded School, Murray Graded School, and Douglass High School [source: "Schools in Calloway County (Graded and High Schools)" a one page unpublished document in the Kentucky Education Collection, Series 1, Box 4, File: Calloway County Education]. During the 1956-57 school term, the Almo High School (for Whites) and the Murray High Schools (for Whites) began to integrate [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1956-57, pp.422-423].

  • Colored schools (8)
  • Buffalo School
  • Murray School
  • Douglass School

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Calloway County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Murray, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Buffalo, Kentucky in Wikipedia.


Cited in this Entry

NKAA Source: Report of the Superintendent of public instruction of the Commonwealth of Kentucky for school year ending ...
NKAA Source: History of education in Calloway County, Kentucky (thesis)
NKAA Source: Kentucky public school directory (serial)
NKAA Source: Kentucky Education Collection, Series 1 (archives)

Related Entries Citing this Entry

NKAA Entry:  African American Schools - Colored Superintendents at Kentucky Public Schools, 1925

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“African American Schools in Calloway County, KY,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed July 27, 2021,

Last modified: 2017-11-03 21:00:00