Beulah Grove Lodge and School

Douglasville - Douglas County

The Story

The Beulah Grove Lodge No. 372, Free and Accepted Masons, was the brainchild of freedman Jack Smith. Smith provided the land in 1881 for a church, lodge and school to be built for the African American community in Douglasville. The building was later constructed by Lodge members around 1910, with a schoolroom for the Pleasant Grove Colored School on the ground floor and a Masonic lodge space on the second floor. Owned by the neighboring Pleasant Grove Baptist Church, the building has not been in regular use for almost four decades.

The Threat

Beulah Grove Lodge and School stands as an important piece of history in the Jim Crow South. Many rural African American communities utilized these communal buildings for multiple purposes, reflecting their need for independence and self-reliance. Due to its infrequent use, the lodge has deteriorated to a dangerous state and rehabilitation efforts have been complicated by the pandemic. However, Douglas County has selected Beulah Grove for inclusion on the South Georgia Scenic Bypass Route, encouraging those involved to see this important historic site saved.