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

African American Schools in Russell County, KY

Parker H. Jackman was one of the first teachers in the colored schools in Russell County, KY; he began teaching after the Civil War ended. It is not known how long the school existed or where exactly it was located. By 1895, there were four colored schools in Russell County, KY, according to the Biennial Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, 1895-97, pp.669-672]. One of the schools was taught in a log cabin and the other three were taught in frame buildings. The average attendance was 40 students and there were 4 teachers, 1895-96, and there were 35 students and three teachers, 1896-97. The teachers' average wages were $24.12, 1895-96, and $19.08, 1896-97. During the 1902-03 school term, there was one student from Russell County who attended the State Normal School for Colored Persons (now Kentucky State University) [source: Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, 1901-03, p.81]. 

The average attendance at the Russell County colored schools was 38, 1901-02, and 48, 1902-03 [p.329]. In 1905, the students attending Russell Springs Colored School moved from their old school building to the school that was used by the white students [source: Russell County, Kentucky: history & families by Turner Publishing Company, p.156]. A new school had been built for the white students who attended Russell Springs Academy, a private school. Their old school, where the colored students would be attending, was located on North Main Street near the Christian Church. Several years later, a new school building for the colored students was constructed on S. Highway 379. There were 3 colored schools in Russell County in 1925 with one teacher at each school [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1925-1926, p.68], and the following year, there were 2 colored schools [1926-1927, p.82]. In 1935, Miss Thelma Simpson was a school teacher in Jamestown [source: Kentucky Negro Educational Association Journal, v.6, no.1, October-November 1935, p.63]. There continued to be two colored schools in Russell County, until 1953, when Greens Chapel was the one remaining school [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1953-1954, p.807]. In 1955, the Russell County High School was the first to report having both white and colored students [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1955-56, p.228], and the following year the school was listed as integrated [source: Kentucky Public School Directory, 1956-57, p.446].

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Russell County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Jamestown, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Russell Springs, Kentucky in Wikipedia.


Cited in this Entry

NKAA Entry: Jackman, Parker Hiram
NKAA Source: Biennial report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of Kentucky with accompanying documents for the two years beginning July 1 ... and ending June 30 ... (periodical)
NKAA Source: Russell County, Kentucky: history & families
NKAA Source: Kentucky public school directory (serial)
NKAA Source: Kentucky Negro educational association journal (periodical)
NKAA Source: The Kentucky school directory (serial)

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“African American Schools in Russell County, KY,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed May 26, 2022,

Last modified: 2017-09-27 20:08:01