African American Schools in Grant County, KY
As early as 1880, there was a colored school in Grant County, KY; the teacher was Peter Farwell [source: U.S. Federal Census]. The date of the first Negro school report in Grant County is said to be 1881 according to Samuel Elmore King's 1934 thesis titled A History of Education in Grant County, Kentucky, p.61. There was one school and one school district located in Dry Ridge [source: King, p.65]. There was a school census of 100 Negro children.
One of the colored schools was located in Williamstown in 1891, the teacher was Miss Grace Lewis [source: "The Williamstown Colored School," Williamstown Courier, 01/19/1891, last page]. By 1892, there were five colored schools and two were taught in school houses [source: King, p.62]. In 1895, there were four school districts [source: Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of the Commonwealth of Kentucky , pp.380-383]. All of the schools were held in frame buildings. There was an average attendance of 84 students 1895-96, and 74 students 1896-97. There was 1 teacher at each school. The number of school districts was reduced to three by 1905, and a County Institute for Colored Teachers was held in Grant County in 1907-1908 [source: King, p.64]. There would be only the one colored school in Dry Ridge by 1934, and Zadah Thompson was the teacher [source: King, p.89].
The Dry Ridge Consolidated Colored School was restored as a project of the Northern Kentucky African-American Task Force and the building opened in June of 2011 as the Grant County Black History Museum [source: N. Jameson, "White woman's passion leads to black history museum," Associated Baptist Press, 06/20/2011]. The museum was burned down by an unknown arsonist in October 2012 [source: "Arson destroys Black History Museum in Grant County," kypost.com, 10/15/2012]. The first school to be listed as integrated in Grant County schools was the Williamstown Independent School listed in the Kentucky Public School Directory, 1956-57, p.428.
- Colored Schools (5)
- Dry Ridge School
- Williamstown School