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HMCPL Digital Archives

About this collection

The Rosenwald Plan, developed and implemented by millionaire and philanthropist Julius Rosenwald (b. 1862 - d. 1932), provided access to basic education for white and African American children living in rural America. These schools came to embody the spirit of the "simple wood schoolhouse," their recognizable design and floor plans standardized by Samuel Leonard Smith.

These schoolhouses were designed to face either north or south in order to both cope with the intense heat during the summer. The interior and exterior color schemes tended to be lighter, to reflect heat as well as to make the interior of the schoolhouses seem more spacious.

This collection includes images of the Rosenwald schools of Madison County in the first half of the 20th century.

 
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