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Symposium, gala to honor 90th anniversary of Fairview School

Fairview-E.S. Brown

This garden perspective shows plans for the Fairview-E.S. Brown School. (contributed image)

Fairview-E.S. Brown Heritage Corp. organizers said Friday they are putting together the final touches for an end-of-the-year celebration to commemorate and help preserve the 90-year-old history of a former black school near Cave Spring.

Joyce Perdue-Smith, chairwoman of the heritage organization, said the three-day festivities — slated for Nov. 6-8 — would help raise funds to restore the historic Fairview Colored School in Cave Spring to be used as a new center for the community.

The celebration will kick off a two-day symposium at Berry College, highlighting the significance of early 20th Century educators and philanthropists.

The celebration will wrap up with a fundraising gala and dinner at the Forrest building, 436 Broad St.

Tickets for the event will go on sale at a later date. Check back at their website Fairviewbrown.org or call 404-759-3918 for more information.

Perdue-Smith said alumni and descendants of children who attended both Fairview School, which was later rebuilt and renamed E.S. Brown in the 1950s, have been invited to attend.

“There are very few African American alumni or people of the schools left around to talk about the schools’ histories and of what it meant for them,” said Perdue-Smith, who attended E.S. Brown as an elementary school student.

The first two days of the event will serve an education experience for attendees and will take a look at two “Titans” who helped to erect the school on the side of Padlock Mountain in 1924 — Booker T. Washington and Julius Rosenwald. “It was part of a their campaign to provide an education for African-Americans,” said Perdue-Smith.

Today, all that remains of the school, which was discovered five years ago, is the first-grade building, which is now in danger of collapsing.