The Eleanor Roosevelt School is located on the outskirts of Warm Springs, Georgia in Meriwether County.
The school was built in 1936 at the behest of President Franklin D. Roosevelt for the community in his adopted retreat of Warm Springs. Named in honor of the First Lady, the Eleanor Roosevelt School was the last school constructed with money from the Rosenwald Fund, which used matching grants to construct quality school buildings for African American children in the rural South between 1912-1936. President Roosevelt’s headstrong passion for this project was reflected by his own financial backing; he wrote a personal check to complete the financing required to begin construction. President Roosevelt was the keynote speaker at the dedication in 1937. Until the mid-1960s, the school served grades one through eight, and it closed in 1972 as a result of countywide integration.
The one-story, seven-room schoolhouse has retained its essential form and floor plan since construction. The building once had multiple groups of tall, double-hung sash windows, positioned to face east and west to capture natural light. The windows have been removed and bricked in. A second building—an International style addition constructed in the 1950s—housed a kitchen, lunchroom and two bathrooms.
The Eleanor Roosevelt School is available for $80,000. It is approximately 5,723 square feet and sits on 4.6 acres. Additional parcels of land may be available for purchase; contact the Trust for more information. The building is on the National Register of Historic Places and may be eligible for state and federal rehabilitation incentives. The buyer is required to sign a Rehabilitation Agreement and all work done to the property must abide by the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation.
About Rosenwald Schools
In 1912, Booker T. Washington approached philanthropist Julius Rosenwald about his concept to build rural schools desperately needed for African American children across the segregated south. That partnership sparked an initiative that eventually created more than 5300 schools, vocational shops and teacher’s homes across 15 states in the South and Southwest from 1912-1932. – National Trust for Historic Preservation. Learn more.
About Warm Springs
The city of Warm Springs in Meriwether County is approximately 60 miles south of Atlanta. Known for its thermal springs, the area emerged as a tranquil resort and spa community due the relatively mild climate and surrounding landscape of Pine Mountain. The legacy of President Franklin D. Roosevelt serves as a poignant and important chapter in American and Warm Springs history. The area is best known as the site of “The Little White House,” Roosevelt’s getaway during his four terms as president. The site gives a snapshot of daily life of our nation’s pivotal and inspirational leader. Roosevelt, who had contracted polio in 1921, found swimming in the area’s mineral waters therapeutic for his paralyzed legs.
About The Georgia Trust
The Georgia Trust is a nonprofit statewide preservation organization. The Revolving Fund program was established to provide effective alternatives to demolition or neglect of architecturally and historically significant properties by promoting their rehabilitation and monitoring their preservation in perpetuity. All properties sold through this program have conservation easements in place to ensure the historic integrity of the property is retained. Additionally, buyers are required to sign a Rehabilitation Agreement and all work done to the property must abide by The Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation. Copies of these documents will be provided by The Georgia Trust for review.
Contact InfoDennis Lovello, Historic Properties Coordinator
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