Last week David and Laurie had the pleasure of presenting at the National Rosenwald Schools Conference in Durham. The presentation, titled "Restoring Your Rosenwald School: A Roadmap to Success," outlined the process of restoration from start to finish.
Restoring any historic building can be challenging and overwhelming. Our goal with this presentation was to clarify the process so that organizations can approach their projects with a more complete understanding of how it all works.
The conference was a huge success, and we enjoyed seeing old friends and meeting new ones along the way.
Here's a bit of Rosenwald history from Preservation Nation:
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.
These schools now are 80-100 years old, and many suffer from abandonment, neglect, or lack of resources for continued use by the communities they once served. In 2002 the National Trust placed Rosenwald Schools on the 11 Most Endangered Historic Places list and created a special initiative to help raise awareness, find new uses, provide resources, and assist in the preservation and rehabilitation of the aging school buildings.