Taylor Institute, 1919-1924   Leave a comment

Taylor Institute

Image Source = Kenneth Randolph Taylor


My great-grandfather, John Dodson, Taylor, Sr. (1860-1936), founded the private school in Summerville, Georgia, in 1919.  It closed five years later.

This is the entry for the school from page 538 of Robert S. Baker, Chattooga:  The Story of a County and Its People (Roswell, GA:  WH Wolfe Associates, 1988):

TAYLOR INSTITUTE  This was a private school established in 1919 by John D. Taylor, Summerville businessman.  It was located on the east side of Highland Avenue in the building that had been the Summerville School until 1914.  Mr. Taylor felt that the County Board of Education did not always maintain the educational standards he felt they should, and he was determined to have the best school possible for his youngest child, John D. Taylor, Jr.

Mr. Taylor went to Peabody College, a teacher’s college in Nashville, Tenn., and asked the school to recommend someone to administer the private school he was planning to open in Summerville.  Prof. Charles E. Bell was recommended, and Mr. Taylor contacted Mr. Bell and employed him as principal of the school.

Prof. Bell and his wife, Nell, were the teachers and the curriculum included arithmetic, Latin, history, reading, and sight singing.  Twenty-four students were enrolled the first year of the school and about fifty the second year.  By 1921 Miss Edith Wilson of Knoxville, Tenn., had been employed as a teacher to assist Mr. and Mrs. Bell.

T.I. had its share of extra-curricular activities.  This included a debating team, a band, and a championship basketball team coached by Prof. Bell.

By 1924 Taylor Institute had served the purpose for which it was established, and Prof. Bell accepted a job as principal of the school at Trion, and secretary of the YMCA there.

John Dodson Taylor, Jr. (1905-1976), was my grandfather.


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