Saturday, July 31, 2010

31 July 1856: Monroe Bowers Morton Is Born

On this day in 1856, according to the 1900 Federal Census, Monroe Bowers "Pink" Morton was born a slave in Athens, Georgia. Over the next 63 years, he would become a well-known entrepreneur and "one of the leaders of the republican party in Georgia."

Morton started earning his own money at age 6 by working as a hotel porter during the Civil War. Once Morton and his family were emancipated, there is little evidence he received any formal education, though the Freedman's Bureau did open the Knox School in Athens in 1868. In the 1870 U. S. Census he is listed as living with his mother, two brothers (Willie, age 10, and Albert, age 6) and two sisters (Sue, age 5, and Emma, 2), but none of them are mentioned as having jobs or attending school. By the 1880 Census, he was married and was working in "Retail Grocery."

Morton eventually went into the construction and real estate business, at one point owning between 25 and 30 houses in Athens. He was active in Republican politics, and attended the 1896 Republican Convention in St. Louis, Missouri. He was elected to be the Georgia representative on the committee that notified William McKinley of Ohio that he had won the party's nomination. After McKinley's inauguration in March, 1897, Morton was appointed postmaster of Athens, a position he held until 1902.

After leaving government service, he returned to construction. He was involved in the construction of the Wilkes County courthouse in Washington, Georgia in 1904, and built his most famous building, the Morton Theatre, in 1909. He also built "a $10,000 marble building on Clayton Street," which is now home to Helix gifts. Two other Athens buildings on "hot corner," the Samaritan Building and Union Hall, have been torn down. In 1914, Morton purchased a local African-American newspaper, the Progressive Era, from W. D. Johnson, an A. M. E. bishop, and W. H. Harris, a dentist with offices in the Morton building. Morton was listed as editor and publisher of the paper, but no copies from his time as publisher have survived.

Morton, his wife Lula, and their four children lived in a large home at the corner of Milledge and Prince Avenues, where Flowerland florist is located today. He lived there from the 1880s until his death on February 12, 1919, "as a result of chronic heart trouble." In his will, he leaves a piece of property and cash to his two sisters, Susie and Emma, and the rest of his estate to his wife and children. He is buried in a fenced family lot in Gospel Pilgrim Cemetery in Athens.

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Friday, July 30, 2010

Don't Miss A Thing!

On this day, we'd like to remind you about two newsletters from the Heritage Room that you can have delivered to your email Inbox.

Our Genealogy Events newsletter comes out at the end of each month. It includes events in the Athens area and from around Georgia related to historical research, events, people, and places; history- or genealogy-related exhibits and displays; as well as meeting information for area history and genealogy groups. It's a great way to plan ahead for trips and activities as the fall whirlwind begins.

We will also have a
Genealogy Tips newsletter that will be sent every few weeks with news of new resources, programs, or developments in the wider genealogy world. It's a one-stop collection of the most interesting and useful genealogy information from the previous month.

Simply follow the links above (or
click here) to see the current newsletters and sign up today!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

27 July 1882: Michael Brothers Open for Business

On this day in 1882, Simon and Moses G. Michael went into the dry goods business as Michael Brothers. Simon was 23 and M. G. was 20. Their store was on the corner of Jackson and Broad Streets, taking half a floor of a two-story wooden building that also housed the city jail and police court.

Within three years, their business grew large enough that they needed the whole building, so the police court and jail moved. They added wholesale to their retail business, and hired traveling salesmen to visit stores in smaller towns in the region. Five years later they built a larger, three-story brick building on the site, staying open during construction by renting sales space in the Athens Hardware building.

In 1893, they moved to the corner of Jackson and Clayton Streets. They had razed the two-story wooden laundry building on the lot to erect a five-story stone building that took up one-third of the block along Clayton Street. The first two floors were dedicated to department-store style retail, and the rest of the building used for wholesale goods. They shared the block between Jackson and Wall Streets with the Athens post office. The new building featured gas lighting and an hydraulic elevator.

When the post office moved in 1905, the Michael Brothers bought the lot and built another two-story building, taking up another third of the block facing Clayton Street. They moved their retail business to the smaller building so they could devote all five stories of the 1893 building to their wholesale business. Their slogan was "Michael Brothers: Since 1882, the Store Good Goods Made Popular."

In 1921, a fire began in the Max Joseph building at the corner of Clayton and Wall Streets. Also present in that building was automobile retailer Denny Motor Company, which had drums of petroleum stored on the first floor. Within 45 minutes, the fire had consumed the Joseph building and both Michael Brothers establishments, even melting coins held in the safe. The brothers noted after the fire that "The commercial monument which we have striven through thirty-nine years to erect was licked up in almost thirty-nine minutes by the cruel tongue of fire and flame."

Total losses to downtown businesses was estimated at $2 million, with at least half borne by Simon and M.G Michael. They announced immediately that they would rebuild, and that they needed more space anyway. Never ones to let construction interfere with the business, they set up temporary offices at the Georgian Hotel within a week of the fire, announcing their location in newspaper ads that noted, "We have lost our store buildings and our stock of merchandise--we are deeply thankful that we have not lost a single friend." They also promised that "The Michael method of merchandising will be maintained in every respect."

The new building opened in summer of 1922. It was Athens' first building with overhead sprinklers. It also featured a classic design with giant, electrically illuminated display windows and walnut paneling on the walls, showcases, counters, and back storage units. Men's furnishings were to the immediate left of the front door, with stationery and books in the section behind; women's cosmetics, jewelry, and accessories were to the immediate right of the door. The building also featured large ceiling and wall fans to keep the air circulating and cool.

Each brother focused on a different area of the business. Simon ran the wholesale side, managing sales to other stores of ready-to-wear clothing, sewing items, accessories, and home furnishings. M. G. ran the public department store with sales of clothing, furs, millinery, costume jewelry, sewing supplies and notions, books, stationery, linens, glassware, lamps, rugs, drapes, toys, and small appliances. Their tailoring department employed in-house seamstresses who could alter or create clothing for customers, and do customized upholstery and other items for the home. Certain departments, such as women's shoes, leased space to outside companies. By the 1930s, the Mezzanine level added a hairdressing department. Every July, they had a store-wide anniversary sale.

Many employees of the Michael Brothers stayed with the organization for their entire careers. They found Simon and M.G. to be "fair, honest, and concerned about employees individually, as people with their own lives to lead." They treated all their customers with respect and kindness, allowing them to add to their unpaid account balances during the lean years of the boll weevil and the Depression, even as Georgia's economic decline brought the end to their wholesale business.

Both brothers were involved in Athens' civic life and were strong advocates for the city. Simon was a member of the City Bond Commission, and M.G. spent many years on the Board of Education, served as president of the Athens Chamber of Commerce, and helped organize Athens Lodge 790 of the Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks. Both families were active members of the Congregation Children of Israel and the Red Cross. They also had other business interests in Athens, purchasing and running the Colonial Theatre, owning other commercial real estate in town, and Simon served as Director of the National Bank of Athens.

During WWII, the third floor of the department store was converted for housing cadets from the U. S. Navy pre-flight base and soldiers brought to town for the signal training corp by installing bathrooms with showers. Michael Brothers Department Store also acted as a blood bank, hosted meetings and collection drives, and promoted War Bonds.

Sons of the original owners took over the business in 1942, but the third generation of Michaels were not interested in retail. The business was sold to Davison's in April, 1953. The 1921 building now houses private offices, Doc Chey's Noodle House, Mellow Mushroom pizza, the UGA Graduate School, and a mezzanine level event space.

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Friday, July 23, 2010

23 July 2003: Fire at the Main Library

On this day in 2003, a fire was started at 5:45pm on the second floor of the Ilah Dunlap Little Memorial Library, better known as the Main Library, on the University of Georgia campus. While no one was injured, approximately 200 employees and visitors had to be evacuated, and there was extensive smoke damage throughout the building.

Within 20 minutes of the firefighter's arrival, they had the fire contained. A total of 40 firemen were called to the scene: 30 from four Athens-Clarke County stations and 10 from Oconee County and Winterville. Many of the windows on the second floor of the library were not designed to open, so firemen smashed them open to help disperse the smoke.

Smoke caused the most extensive damage to the library, with the duct system within the building delivering smoke to all levels, including the Hargrett Rare Book & Manuscript Library on the third floor. Though damages were originally estimated to be only $1.5 million, recovery efforts (such as replacing 70,000 new ceiling tiles, hundreds of light fixtures, rebinding nearly 13,000 volumes, and treating thousands of volumes and areas of the building for smoke damage) took more than a year and cost over $12 million.

Within a week, investigators ruled arson as the cause of the fire. In April, 2005, a homeless man seen at the library the day of the fire, went on trial for two charges of first-degree arson. His attorney claimed his confession had been coerced and that investigators had not proven who or even how the fire started. A jury of eight women and four men deliberated for eight hours over two days before finding the man not guilty. He was, however, banned from all campus properties for two years.

The 2003 fire was not the first to be experienced by University of Georgia libraries. Their original collection of books was destroyed by a fire in 1830, and was replaced with new volumes the following year. In 1902, when George Foster Peabody was given a tour of campus, he was alarmed to find the school's library in a wooden building, and told Chancellor Walter Barnard Hill to build a modern, brick building and send him the bill. In 1905, a new $50,000 library opened, and included new volumes also donated by George Foster Peabody. It is currently the Administration building after several decades as the Georgia Museum of Art.

By 1945, the library had 205,000 volumes and needed new space. In 1952, the library moved into its current home, the Ilah Dunlap Little Memorial library. It is known on campus as "the main library" to distinguish it from the separate science library on south campus, the law library next door, the Miller Learning Center next to the Tate Center, and the new Special Collections library currently under construction on Hull and Waddell Streets.

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Monday, July 19, 2010

19 July 1964: Basketball Great Teresa Edwards Is Born

On this day in 1964, Teresa Edwards was born in Cairo, Georgia. She would be the oldest of four, the only girl, and one of the greatest basketball athletes in the history of the game. She is a member of six Halls of Fame, is No. 22 on Sports Illustrated's list of 100 Greatest Female Athletes of the 20th Century, and is "the most decorated Olympic basketball player on the planet, male or female, with four gold medals and one bronze medal in five Olympics."

An All-American and state champion as part of Cairo High School's Syrup Maids basketball team, Edwards came to the University of Georgia in 1983 on a basketball scholarship. She was the first member of her family to graduate from college. During her four years playing point guard for Coach Andy Landers, she led the Lady Bulldogs to three Southeastern Conference titles, two Final Fours, and the team had an overall record of 116-7. She averaged 15.5 points per game and 5.1 assists per game, and UGA retired her number (#5) in 1989.

In 1987, there were no professional basketball teams in the United States, so Edwards took her game abroad. Over the next nine years, she played professionally in France, Spain, Italy, Japan, and Russia. She gave up lucrative foreign contracts to play for the U. S. National Team in 1995-1996, where the Women's team went 60-0.

Her Olympic career, spanning 26 years, is nothing less than astonishing. She joined her first U. S. National team in 1983. In the 1984 Los Angeles games, at the age of 20, Edwards earned her first gold medal; in the 2000 Sydney games, at the age of 36, she earned her fourth gold medal. She is both the youngest and oldest women's basketball player to win gold medals.

Edwards is the United States' only five-time Olympic basketball player, and one of three people in the whole world to play basketball in five Olympic games (the other two, men from Australia and Brazil, have no medals to their names). In the 1996 Atlanta games, Edwards was chosen to take the Olympic Oath during Opening Ceremonies; it was her 32nd birthday.

A pioneer of professional women's basketball with the American Basketball League, Edwards wanted a pro league for women that would not be a sideshow to the NBA. However, the WNBA survived while the ABL did not, and Edwards and the WNBA could not settle on terms. She stayed in shape for the Sydney games by practicing daily with ex-NBA players at a gym near her home in Atlanta. She averaged 6.1 points per game and 3.4 assists per game in the 2000 Olympics.

On June 15, 2010, Edwards was inducted into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame. She is also a member of the Grady County Sports Hall of Fame, the Olympic Hall of Fame, the National High School Sports Hall of Fame, the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame, and UGA's Circle of Honor. She is currently the athletic representative on the USA Basketball Board of Directors.

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Thursday, July 15, 2010

Ben Epps: Georgia's First Aviator

On this day, we'd like to invite you to a program about Athens aviator, Benjamin Thomas Epps, presented by his grandson, Billy Galt, on Sunday, July 18th, 2010, in the Library Auditorium.

Epps was an inventor, mechanic, and self-taught aviator. In 1907, at age 19, he was the first Georgian to build and fly a motor-driven airplane. His first flight was about 100 yards long with an altitude of 50 feet in a cow pasture outside of Athens. His shop was on Washington Street downtown, where the bar 8es is located today.

You can learn more about Ben Epps, and the local effort to raise money for a statue memorializing the man and his achievements at the Ben T. Epps Statue website.

Be sure to stop by the Library's exhibit of Ben Epps memorabilia, donated by the Epps family. The program is free and open to the public, and light refreshments will be served in the lobby after the presentation. We hope to see you there for this exciting program!

Monday, July 12, 2010

12 July 1907: "In a Neat and Appreciated Manner"

On this day in 1907, the Athens Banner ran a story on its front page that the previous morning, the University of Georgia class of 1907 had presented Miss Sarah Frierson, the Assistant Librarian at the University, with "a handsome silver butter dish."

The story noted that "all of the graduates of the University of Georgia appreciate the interest taken in them by Miss Frierson and the way in which she looks after their every need when seeking after information in the library."

Sarah Frierson was the first woman staff member at the University of Georgia. She was hired to run the library in 1887; until then, the library had been run by volunteers from faculty. The library had, in the past, simply moved to whatever room might be available on campus for the purpose. By the time Miss Frierson was appointed by the Trustees, at the age of 49, the library had somewhat settled into a single large room on the 2nd floor of what is now the Hamilton-Holmes Academic Building. Rather than a modern cataloging system, books were arranged by subject in alcoves around the room.

Miss Frierson loved the University and the students. Besides her basic duties of helping them find the book they needed to pursue their studies, she also lent a sympathetic ear, attended sporting events and debates, chaperoned dances, played organ in the Chapel for Vespers services, and assisted with commencement exercises. She wore a red and black ribbon pinned to her dress "in support of the students." The students, in turn, gave her the nickname "Miss Puss," and would often tease her affectionately, and provide her, as in 1907, with tokens of appreciation.

Also an avid gardener, Miss Frierson added plants to the library window spaces, and planted a climbing red rose bush outside the Academic Building, where students could cut roses to give their sweethearts. She also planted and tended flower beds on an otherwise plain campus.

In 1905, as part of the funding gift from George Foster Peabody for a new, less flammable library, the University of Georgia hired its first professional librarian. Miss Frierson, however, was understood to remain at the library as his assistant. In 1910, the year she retired, the Pandora was dedicated to her:

Miss Sarah Adeline Frierson, than whom the University has never had a more faithful servant or one who has won a warmer place in the hearts of all whom she has touched.
Despite retiring from her library work, she continued to care for the flowers she'd planted on campus, assist with commencement week activities, and chaperone social occasions. When she died in 1912, alumni gave a blanket of flowers to cover her casket, and she was buried wearing a red and black ribbon over her breast. Sarah "Miss Puss" Frierson is buried in Oconee Hill Cemetery.

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Sunday, July 11, 2010

11 July 1902: "Woman Takes Shape Of Goat."

Strange Tale of Ghosts at the Cemetery.

People who live in the neighborhood of Oconee cemetery have been talking ofa strange phenomenon for the past few days, which is hardly credible, but still is the sole topic of conversation in the neighborhood.

The story is nothing more than a wierd [sic] tale of a ghost with some of the old time and worn accessories out out. [sic]

Several people who have had occasion to visit of late, places near the cemetery [sic] tell of a strange apparition which they say can be seen every night within the cemetery.

The figure rises out of the grave of a woman and, at first airy and phantom-like, at last takes the shape of a goat, with long horns and cloven feet. The transition from the mazy [sic] figure to the well defined outlines of the goat occupies several minutes of time, but as soon as the figure is well defined, it speeds to the banks of the Oconee nearby and plunges headlong into the current and is seen no more.

Several young gentlemen with a desire for the curious and mystical, and in order to display their courage in defiance of the wishes of their friends went to the cemetery two nights ago and sought admission to the cemetery in order to interview the phenomenon but the sexton was inexorable and would not let them in, and the mystery in regard to the woman and the goat is still unsolved.

Published by the Weekly Banner, 11 July 1902, page 1.

As there were no following reports of sightings of the apparition, Oconee Hill Cemetery is believed to be free of ghostly goat women to this very day.

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Saturday, July 10, 2010

A Great Way to Get Started with Genealogy

On this day, we'd like to remind you about our next Getting Started with Genealogy class on Thursday, July 15th, 2010, from 6-8:30pm in the Heritage Room.

In this free, informal session, we'll walk you through the basics of researching your family history. The class is designed to help you begin the construction of your family tree, and to teach you about the resources available in Athens that will be useful to you. The class includes handouts, and is useful even if you aren't looking for relatives in Georgia.

The program is free and open to the public, but registration is required. Call (706) 613-3650, ext. 350 or email us at to register.

Please bring a pencil for taking notes, and a sweater, as the Heritage Room can be chilly in the summer. Hope to see you there!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

8 July 1920: Police Jurisdiction Over Roosters Disputed

On this day in 1920, page 7 of the Athens Banner brought to attention this dispute on Pulaski Street:

Pulaski Street Is Disturbed By Early Crowing of Rooster

Family Calls Upon Police Department To Stop Disorder; Chief Says It Has No Jurisdiction.

The jurisdiction of the police department of the city of Athens over Pulaski street roosters was brought into question yesterday afternoon and will, it was stated at police court, probably be placed before council at its next meeting.

The cause of the legal point being brought into question was a hurry call to police headquarters answered yesterday afternoon by Patrolman Nelms. He was summoned to a Pulaski street home, the name of whose owner he refused to disclose when questioned yesterday, and informed that a neighbor's roosters were waking up the family at too early an hour since the summer days have brought dawn at 4:30 o'clock in the morning.

Patrolman Nelms has, in his years of police service, been called upon frequently to settle delicate technicalities of the law on the spur of the moment, but the Pulaski street complaint nonplussed him. He referred the complaining parties to the sanitary department or Sheriff Jackson and assured them that the City Council had not authorized the police department to control Athens roosters.

Chief of Police Henry Beusse suggested yesterday afternoon that other Athens people who are annoyed by early crowing roosters might petition City Council to pass a rooster-muzzling ordinance, but that until some official action was taken, the police department has no jurisdiction over the matter.

Captain of Detectives Seagraves said the call yesterday to stop "disorderly conduct" among the city's barnyard population was the first of its kind he could remember in all his years of service.

Neither the newspaper nor City Council Minutes indicate whether this issue was resolved in 1920, but it is an issue that is still relevant on Pulaski Street and in the rest of the city today. Currently, it is illegal in Athens to keep chickens on less than an acre of land in residential areas, but many people keep chickens, as pets and for eggs, despite the law.

In 2008, Commissioner Kelly Girtz, a resident of Pulaski Street, proposed changing the law to allow people to raise chickens in their backyard. He believed that because residents were keeping chickens anyway, it would be a good idea to regulate the practice for the purposes of public health and safety of both the area residents and the chickens. Even the Athens Banner-Herald agreed that such a law would be a sensible reaction to the situation, but the Athens-Clarke County Commission did not support the idea.

This March, HB 842 passed out of the Georgia House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee, but even with some changes, was not supported by local governments, who balked at state laws overriding local ordinances. Commissioner Girtz plans to revisit urban farming on the Athens Commission in 2011.

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Sunday, July 4, 2010

4 July 1860: Cornerstone Laid at Rock College

On this day in 1860, Mount Vernon Lodge No. 22 laid the cornerstone for the building that would become Rock College, later known as University High School, even later known as Gilmer Hall.

The stone was inscribed with the following
This spot was selected by the prudential committee and W. L. Mitchell, T. R. R. Cobb and H. H. Hull, Jr., esquire, who were appointed building committee of the board of trusees of the University of Georgia. The corner stone [sic] was laid by the Mt. Vernon Lodge, No. 22, on July 4th, 1860.
Known as "Rock College" because it was built from rocks from the site of the building and cement, with no reinforcement, the building first acted as University High School, a University of Georgia preparatory school with the mission of "domesticating (the students) under such kind and watchful provisions as shall aim at securing good health and pure morals, it proposes to give them an accurate and complete training for the curriculum of University Life."

University High School was dedicated in April, 1862. Enrollment during the Civil War was primarily from Georgia and South Carolina. There were two 21-week terms per year, with 5-week vacations around Christmas and mid-summer.

The cost for a boarding student was $150 per term; it cost only $35 per term for day students; 103 students enrolled the first year. Demand was high enough that new applicants had to be turned away by November, 1862. In January, 1863, boarding student tuition and fees rose to $175 per term, yet the school still suffered food and staff shortages due to the war.

By 1864, tuition was $800 per term in Confederate dollars, or $100 per term in specie. That year, the Georgia legislature reorganized the state militia to ensure Georgia had a home defense present during the war, as a response to the Confederate legislature's revision of the Conscription Act that "severely limited the number of draft exempt categories and expanded the military age limits" to include all white males between the ages of 17 and 50. Among those Georgia Governor Joseph E. Brown exempted from all military service except home defense were the students attending University High School.

After the war, the building acted as a subsidized school for disabled Confederate veterans who were under 30 years of age and wanted to attend school. Again, applicants exceeded space available. Subsidies ended in 1868, when University High School was reinstated for another four years before temporarily acting as the site of the newly created State College of Agriculture and Mechanical Arts in 1872.

The building and campus became the State Normal School, a teacher's college, in 1891. As the summer-only sessions were funded entirely from the George R. Gilmer Fund, Rock College was rechristened Gilmer Hall. The Navy Supply Corps School took over the campus in 1954, and tore down Gilmer Hall in 1960.

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Saturday, July 3, 2010

Book Signing by Journalist Joe Cumming

On this day we'd like to let you know that journalist Joseph B. Cumming, Jr. will be coming to the Athens-Clarke County Library to talk about his new book, Bylines: Writings from the American South, 1963-1997 on Wednesday, July 14th, 2010, at 7pm in the Auditorium. The event is free and open to the public.

Mr. Cumming is the former Southern Bureau Chief for Newsweek magazine who also published articles for Esquire, Southern Voices, Harper's, Chattahoochee Review, Atlanta Magazine, and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. His book is collection of freelance articles covering everything from the Civil Rights movement to working with Celestine Sibley.

The author will sign copies of his book in the lobby after the program, and light refreshments will be served. Copies of his book can be purchased in the Library Store starting July 7th, 2010. We hope to see you there!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

1 July 1902: A Free Kindergarten for East Athens

On this day in 1902, the Athens Women's Club was scheduled to open their first Free Kindergarten project.

In January 1902, the Women's Club began investigating the needs of the factory workers in East Athens, and chose the project of a free kindergarten for children too young for the public schools. The Kindergarten Committee investigated costs for a space, supplies and food for the children, and the cost of an instructor. Consulting with other groups in Atlanta and Macon who had accomplished similar free kindergartens, they devoted $50.00 to start the school.

A newspaper clipping in the Women's Club minutes extols their project:
The school will open the first of July and continue through the summer, and will be a permanent institution. This noble work for the helpless, unfavored, and often ill-cared for little ones will strike a responsive chord in every heart where the love of humanity throbs, and that feels the pathos of a cheerless untrained childhood. The happiness that is a child's inalienable birthright too often fades in the presence of the tragedy of want and suffering.

Those noble club women will do a blessed work in taking these child lives into their keeping to give them tender guidance and support in these, their helpless, impressionable years.

No one who knows the scope of this work fails to realize that the sweet sunniness of their kindergarten mornings penetrates the homes of these little ones and is a benediction to their parents as well. In all parts of Georgia this has been found to be one of the most far reaching forms of philanthrepic [sic] works.
At the Club's next meeting at the end of September, the Kindergarten Committee reported that 54 pupils had enrolled during the kindergarten's first month, and the average daily attendance was 32 students. By the following April, a newspaper story noted that the Free Kindergarten "is accomplishing much good, and deserves the earnest support of all the people of the city."

Hired to teach the kindergarten was Miss Marion Long Carlton, a club member and daughter of Henry Hull Carlton, a medical doctor, newspaper owner, lawyer, member of the Georgia legislature, and veteran of the Civil and Spanish-American Wars. Miss Carlton had no formal education training at the time, but was well respected for the work she accomplished at the school. The following summer, the club paid to send her to Louisville, Kentucky, "to study Kindergarten work."

In 1905, the City Council took over the East Athens Free Kindergarten program. The Athens Women's Club started the West Athens Free Kindergarten the following year, and it, too, was later incorporated into the city school system. Miss Carlton managed both programs until at least 1909; she died in 1914 at the age of 36.

Education was a primary interest of the Athens club since it's inception in 1896. The club's motto was "Not for ourselves, but for others." In 1907, the African-American Women's club in Athens asked the Athens Women's Club for assistance in setting up a "Negro Mothers Club" for working women with children under the age of 10. The Athens Women's Club helped find a suitable location, and financed the rent and payment for an African-American care giver, an unusual crossover project between the race-divided women's clubs and federations.

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