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

African American Schools in Logan County, KY

The colored school in Logan County, KY, was one of the 13 counted in the 1866 publication titled Annual Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of Kentucky, for the School Year Ending December 31, 1864. Between 1866 and 1870, there was to be a colored school established in Auburn and supported by the U.S. Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, but the plans were scrapped due to a mob's reaction. In spite of the opposition, by 1872, there was an African American school in Russellville, KY, the teacher was C. C. Vaughn [Cornelius C. Vaughn, 1847-1923; Kentucky Certificate of Death Registered No. 93]. Vaughn, who was born in Virginia, was a Berea College graduate and he had been a school teacher in Cynthiana, KY [source: Ante-bellum free Negroes as race leaders in Virginia and Kentucky during Reconstruction (thesis) by C. B. King, pp.104-105]. C. C. Vaughn would remain in Russellville for more than 50 years; he was a leader in the community and he was in charge of the public education of Negroes in Russellville. 

In 1879, there were 26 colored school districts in Logan County, according to the thesis of Charles Thomas Canon, History of Education in Logan County, p.43. The enrollment and attendance records, if they ever existed, were no longer available when Canon completed his thesis in 1929. However, records from 1881 showed that there were 18 log house buildings and 9 frame houses [source: Canon, pp.47-48]. In 1880, the colored teachers in Logan County were Carry Smith in Adairville; Lewis Temple, James F. Gray, and Carl C. Vaughn in Russellville; and William Turner in Keysburg [source: U.S. Federal Census]. In 1886, there were 21 teachers in the colored schools in Logan County, and many of the schools were taught in churches [see NKAA entry for African American Schools, 1886].

By 1901, there were 9 log house schools and 16 frame schools [source: Canon, p.92]. In 1917, the number of log house schools had decreased to 2 and there were 21 frame schools. Between 1917 and 1932, Logan County would have more Rosenwald structures than any other Kentucky county; there were 8 schools and a library [see NKAA entry for Rosenwald Schools]. The school in Adairville was supported by the Jeanes Fund and had a two year high school that was attended by 8 students in 1925 (Logan County Trade School), and there were 155 elementary students [source: Canon, pp.66-68]. The county school system would pay the tuition of students who wanted to attend Russellville City High School, a four year high school.

The highest attendance at the Logan County colored schools was 1,049 for the school terms in 1904 and 1905 [source, Canon, pp.93-94]. In 1925, Margaret Holland was the county supervising industrial teacher in Adairville, she served for 7 months [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1925-1926, p.66]. By 1927, the attendance had decreased to 459. In 1930, the colored school in Knob City was taught by John Cooper [see M. Morrow, "The History of Russellville's Uncovered Cabin," News Democrat Leader, 03/04/2009, Opinions section, p.A4 [available online]. In 1940, the Negro teachers in Logan County were Lee Butler, Jonella Dickerson, Alice Dunnigan, Vera H. Eidson, Helen First, Elisa Funt, Anna King, Heddy B. Lewis, Mattie McReynold, Frank Orndorff, Stella Ernestine Procter, Alice Ruth Procter, John William Roberts, Edwin Smith, Nannie Sweatt, Katherine Turner, James P. Walker, and George H. Wards [source: U.S. Federal Census]. The first schools listed as integrated in the Kentucky Public School Directory, 1956-57, pp.439-440, were Russellville High School and Sacred Heart. The schools listed as "white & integrated" were Adairville, Auburn, Lewisburg, and Olmstead.

  • Colored Schools (27)
  • Adairville School
  • Adairville Training School [source: Kentucky School Directory, 1961-62, p.875]
  • Auburn Training School [source: Kentucky School Directory, 1961-62, p.875]
  • Johntown Training School [source: Kentucky School Directory, 1961-62, p.875]
  • Keysburg School
  • Knob City School
  • Logan County Trade School [Principal A. M. Todd - source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1925-1926]
  • Russellville School

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Logan County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Adairville, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Auburn, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Johntown, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Keysburg, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Knob City, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Russellville, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Item Relations

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“African American Schools in Logan County, KY,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed May 30, 2024,

Last modified: 2017-10-25 18:38:54