From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

African American Schools in Fulton County, KY

Between 1866 and 1870, a colored school existed in Hickman, KY, supported by the U.S. Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands [see NKAA entry for Freedmen Schools]. In 1880, the teachers in Fulton County were James Chochran at Johnsons and Nannie Johnston at Hickman [source: U. S. Federal Census]. 

In 1887, Steve L. Brooks founded the Brook's Chapel School, serving as the school teacher as well as pastor. The school was burned by Night Riders in the 1920s; afterward classes were held in the chapel. Today Brooks Chapel Baptist Church is located at 230 Brooks Chapel Road in Fulton, KY. A picture of the Brook's Chapel School and the students, taken in 1888, is on p. 13 in Fulton, by E. R. Jones. Other African American schools and teachers in Fulton County are listed below [source: "Fulton County School Census 1898," The Hickman Courier, 5/27/1898, p. 3].

In 1890, the Kentucky General Assembly authorized the payment of $127.28 to teacher Mrs. Daisy E. Harvey. The Fulton County Superintendent had refused to pay her salary because she had missed the teachers' civil government exam due to an illness in her family. Harvey was a teacher in Colored common school district number six in Fulton County. For more see Chapter 64, pp. 110-111 of the Acts of the General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, 1890].

In 1895, there were eight colored schools in Fulton County, KY [source: Biennial Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, 1895-1897, pp. 366-370]. The average attendance of 245 students in 1895-96 were taught by 11 teachers; 251 students in 1896-97 were taught by 10 teachers. From 1899 to 1901 the average attendance at the Fulton County Colored Schools ranged from 261 to 271 students. Teachers during this time earned an average monthly salary between $33.81 and $36.12 [source: Biennial Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of Kentucky, July 1899-June 1901, pp. 63, 426, & 454].

Three teachers taught in the districts that held classes for at least five months. The Colored common school graduates for July 1897-July 1900 were Aida Williner, William Thompson, Mary Plumer, Beatrice Nichols, Roy Atwood (b. 1883; brother to Rufus Atwood), Ora McCutchen, Alvin Barksdale (b .1884), D. H. Anderson, Ernest Henry Nichols, Lou Anna Lauderdale (b. 1886), Blanche Lee Atwood (b. 1885; sister to Rufus Atwood), Pinky Lee Alexander, Nannie Milner, Disune Smith, and Lillian Metta Wright. 

Beginning In 1910, the Fulton Colored School was the only location in Kentucky that served as a Traveling Library Station for African Americans [source: p. 6 of the Handbook of Ketntucky Libraries, Kentucky Library Commission, Bulletin No. 1, by the Kentucky Library Extension Division [online at Google Books] and Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky, by R. F. Jones]. In 1911, J. L. Northington was the custodian of the collection.

The first high school for African Americans, built in 1905, was the result of fund raising by Dennis H. Anderson. The high school was located in Hickman [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1930-1931, p. 61]. Hickman School was one of the few in Kentucky to have an African American superintendent in 1925: G. T. Halliburton was the father of Cecil D. Halliburton [see the NKAA entry for Colored School Superintendents]. 

In 1940, the Negro teachers in Fulton County were Hattie Beltra, Mary Compton, J. D. Compton, Annie Gale, A. W. Green, Bessie A. Green, Elizabeth Moore, Lydia Moore, Plumer Nichols, Allie D. Wilson, Blanche Iralda Wilson, T. Essa Williams, and Ada Yates, all in Hickman; Ledora Kove, Ruth Jones, and Angie Tucker, all in Fulton; and James N. Milliner, Lauis Uplham, and Beatrice Uplham, all in Fulton County [source: U.S. Federal Census]. The first school to be listed as integrated was Fulton High School on p. 1000 in the Kentucky Public School Directory, 1958-59.

  • Johnsons School
  • Hickman School
  • Brooks Chapel School
  • Colored Schools (8)
  • Alexander District
  • Bowden District
  • Cayce District
  • Fulton District
  • Sassafras Ridge District
  • Sharp or Maddox District
  • Upshaw or Lynch District
  • Phillips School [source: Kentucky School Directory, 1961-62, p. 855]
  • Riverview School [source: Kentucky School Directory, 1961-62, p. 855]
  • Milton School [source: Kentucky School Directory, 1961-62, p. 855] 

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Fulton County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Fulton, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Johnsons, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Hickman, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Alexander, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Bowden, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Cayce, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Sassafras Ridge, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Sharp, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Upshaw, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Item Relations

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“African American Schools in Fulton County, KY,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed May 26, 2024,

Last modified: 2020-09-02 16:44:45