Class of 1945

Atlanta Grade School Friends

Restoring the historic Atlanta-Miller Grade School in Atlanta, Texas.

Case Statement

Atlanta Grade School Friends

The mission of Atlanta Grade School Friends is to restore the historic Atlanta-Miller Grade School located on Miller Street in Atlanta, Texas. From 1936 to 1974 the school provided a safe and welcoming environment for Atlanta's children and their dedicated teachers. In addition to renovation of the building and the continued maintenance thereof, Atlanta Grade School Friends oversees the development and management of educational programs and related activities for all ages that enhance the building's usefulness.

Future Plans

Atlanta Grade School Friends is ramping-up its work in 2022 by strengthening its infrastructure, upgrading its website, and launching an e-communication platform. These tasks also include the creation of a formal case for support document that will in turn be used to solicit donations for restoration of the historic Atlanta-Miller Grade School. Architectural drawings are being prepared. We envision the historic school as a place for community education, meetings and potentially for workforce training. If you have questions, reach out to us by email.

History of Atlanta-Miller Grade School

Atlanta-Miller Grade School was a Works Progress Administration (WPA) project taking 120 days to complete. Hardy Brothers of Texarkana began construction of the one-story, six-room building of locally made brick in 1936.

As the community grew, rooms were added over the years. Between 1975 and 1980, Atlanta-Miller Grade School became the Atlanta Multi-Purpose Center and was put to good use until 1990. From 1990 to 2000, the school was used as a storehouse, receiving no maintenance. Water damage and neglect to regular maintenance threatens this school building, like many in small rural Texas towns.

Many Atlanta-Miller Grade School former students and supporters have joined together to launch a fundraising campaign to fully restore the historic building. Emergency repairs have been made to prevent additional water infiltration and damage. See Preservation Notes for more detailed information about where we stand today!

Texas Historical Commission

In 2006, Atlanta-Miller Grade School received an historical marker from the Texas Historical Commission. We are now working on securing a marker from the National Historic Landmarks Program of the National Parks Service. The volunteers of Atlanta Grade School Friends maintain strong ties with the Texas Historical Commission. And, we are working to build new partnerships with organizations like the Texas Forest Trail Region in order to more fully engage visitors and people interested in history and historic preservation.

GuideStar

Atlanta Grade School Friends is pleased to have a profile on GuideStar.

Preservation Notes

Image for Preservation Notes from Atlanta Miller Grade School

The Atlanta-Miller Grade School was constructed in 1936 by the Works Progress Administration (WPA). This is, incidentally, 100 years after Texas became a state. The original building project was completed in 120 days and consisted of six large classrooms, restrooms, teacher's lounge, and administrative offices. An addition designed to add four classrooms was completed a couple of years later, commonly called the first-grade wing. Two more classrooms were added about 20 years later.

The WPA had the intent to finish buildings and move on to the next project and paid little heed to drainage. This caused the building to endure years of water draining into the crawl space and, consequently, damaging the substructure of the building. When the nonprofit Atlanta Grade School Friends was established over 20 years ago, the City of Atlanta had condemned the building because of the unsafe nature of the floors and supporting walls. We began our efforts by stabilizing the structure with cables and support materials. The effort was somewhat successful, but the natural flow of water continued to undermine our efforts. Many years passed with only limited efforts made to move the project forward.

Another Preservation Notes from Atlanta Miller Grade School
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In 2017, Kevin Stingley, a retired educator whose father was a past principal at the school, took it upon himself to begin clearing the debris from the school and stripping out added walls not original to the building. Mr. Stingley re-energized the project and the AGSF began to assist him by lending their time and raising funds. We found a contractor familiar with historical restoration, Addrei Moore, who began working on the project in earnest. The first-grade wing was a total loss and had to be deconstructed. The salvaged materials are being utilized elsewhere in the building. This includes around 7,000 bricks manufactured locally as well as original pine flooring.

We had the topography graded to move the flow of water away from the structure which dried the space under the building for the first time since 1936. Mr. Moore was able to completely refurbish the substructure which turned out to be a major task. Many areas required piers, floor joists, and sub-flooring to bring it back to code. We had a new roof installed on the building as well as electrical service sufficient to meet our future needs. The walls were repaired, plastered, and primed. The windows have been temporarily repaired and the front door has been restored. We have ordered the remaining exterior doors and will soon have them in place. Our next efforts include restoration of restrooms, electrical wiring, and the addition of a HVAC system. A parking lot and sidewalk will be included soon to increase accessibility to the building.

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The Atlanta Grade School Friends are at a crossroads to decide which section to finish out for the next phase of the project. We would like to be able to utilize this next phase as an ongoing fundraising source to complete the entire project by renting out office or event space. The community has shown great interest in what we are accomplishing and expressed gratitude regarding this part of their history being preserved.

- Danny Stanley, T. D. Stanley LLC, Treasurer of Atlanta Grade School Friends and Project Manager

Status Report

Thank You!

As our fundraising plans have developed over the years, we have deeply appreciated the endorsement and support of the following:

  • Bobby Allday
  • Sally Kennedy Allday
  • Neil and Joan Birmingham
  • The Honorable Laura Bush
  • Fred Cameron
  • Sarah Childress
  • Millie B. Davis
  • Flo Harden Eubanks
  • Marilyn Pritchard Felkins
  • Gladys Glass
  • Gay Grumbles Haller
  • Tommy Redman Hannon
  • Carolyn Kennamer Heldt
  • Robert and Lossie Hudspeth
  • Garrett Jackson
  • Claudine Jones
  • Booty Jordan
  • David and Anna Beth Kennedy
  • Jerline Kennedy
  • Henry King
  • Judy Lanier
  • Lewis Lincoln
  • Louise McGee
  • R. L. “Chic” Miles
  • Nancy Nichols Morris
  • Linda Jones Morrow
  • Jane Brabham Murdock
  • John L. Nau, II
  • Glenna Newkirk
  • Marian Spearman Newton
  • Dan and Gretchen Nichols
  • Rosalie Price Nichols
  • Reva Norris
  • The Honorable Anita Perry
  • Diane Morris Peterson
  • Wanda Brabham Posey
  • Ray Price
  • Marge Sandlin
  • Larry Smith
  • Sam Spearman
  • Lynn Spivey
  • Bret Stanley
  • E. R. Stanley
  • Katherine Allday Stubbs
  • Nancy Newkirk Terry
  • Norman Sherman Tinsley
  • Barbara Weems
  • Alice Williams Wilson
  • Marianne Allday Vanbergh
  • Biddy Cook Walker
  • Frank Walker

Are you ready to help
Atlanta Grade School Friends?

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Photo Gallery

Stay tuned as we add photos to this section of our website!

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Testimonials

Stay tuned as we add testimonials to this page of our website! If you would like to add your own testimonial, email it to: atlantagradNOTTHISPARTeschoolfriends@gmail.com. Be sure to include your name as you wish to appear online.

Newsletter

Please sign-up for e-newsletters and e-notifications to learn more about our history, events, our preservation campaign and more!

Atlanta Grade School Friends does not sell nor share its email subscriber list with anyone. We use Mailchimp, which maintains high security standards and allows you to subscribe or unsubscribe at any time. If you have questions, use the secure contact form to reach us. Links to our recent emails are found below.

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Contact Us

Our mailing address is:
P.O. Box 851
Atlanta, Texas 75551

Our physical address is:
200 W. Miller Street
Atlanta, Texas 75551

Tours of Atlanta-Miller Grade School may be made by appointment. Kindly use our contact form to reach us.

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Thank You

Miller Grade School in the Snow

Atlanta Grade School Friends wishes to thank the following for donating during 2019, 2021 and 2022. Our sincere thanks go to Jane Cook Barnhill for the beautiful and inspiring letter she wrote, and to the following contributors:

  • AHS Class of '71 in loving memory of Terry Thompson
  • AHS Class of '74 in loving memory of Lee Ann Smith-Holcomb
  • AHS Class of '74 Bunko Girls in memory of Angela Heath Barnes
  • AHS Class '77 in honor of their classmates
  • Bobby Allday
  • Carolyn M. Appleton
  • John Aubrey in loving memory of classmate Kathy Endsley
  • Kim Babb
  • Susan Bedier in loving memory of Judy Meredith Robinson
  • Gary Boland
  • Julie Braddock
  • Becky Burrows
  • Becky Burrows in loving memory of Neal Peacock
  • Michelle Brock in honor of Jane Cook Barnhill
  • Princess Cameron
  • Gerri Carlisle on behalf of The Tucker Family
  • Tom and Donna Caver
  • Duncan Family in loving memory of John Pierce Ellis
  • Dunan Family in loving memory of Bo Price
  • DaWayne and Eileen Capps
  • Sarah Childress in memory of Shirley Clements
  • Debbie Pyle Cockerman
  • Dwain Currie in honor of Marilyn Felkins and in loving memory of Sonya Felkins
  • Camille and Joe Dawn
  • Merle, Cleo and Tammie Duncan, Cheryl and Tracy Stovall and Makenzie Stovall Lewis in loving memory of Shirley Clements
  • Merle, Cleo and Tammie Duncan, Cheryl and Tracy Stovall and Makenzie Stovall Lewis in loving memory of Neal Peacock
  • Merle, Cleo and Tammie Duncan, Cheryl and Tracy Stovall and Makenzie Stovall Lewis in loving memory of Katherine Stubbs
  • Mary Jane Logwood Dunnam
  • Sherry Estes
  • Sherry and Ricky Griffin
  • Tresa Hall
  • Jan and Joe Hamilton in loving memory of Katherine Stubbs
  • Donna Hanner
  • Tommie Hannon in honor of the Class of 1958
  • Bill and Debbie Vaughan Henson
  • Sandra Dees Howell
  • George Hudspeth
  • Doris Johnson
  • James and Kelly Joslin in loving memory of Katherine Stubbs
  • Mr. and Mrs. Kenny Kremer in loving memory of Judy Meredith Robinson
  • Reese Lockett
  • Gary Lovelace
  • Mr. and Mrs. Mark Mays in loving memory of Judy Meredith Robinson
  • Babs and Phil McCoy in loving memory of Shirley Clements
  • Meg McGoogan
  • Joan Miller in loving memory of Martin Miller
  • Joan Miller in loving memory of Ted Thompson
  • Joanie Miller in loving memory of Martin Miller
  • Joanie Miller in loving memory of Bo Price
  • Margaret Miller-Fitts in memory of Angela Heath Barnes
  • Margaret Miller-Fitts in loving memory of John Pierce Ellis
  • Margaret Miller-Fitts in loving memory of Bo Price
  • Margaret Miller-Fitts in loving memory of Shirley Clements
  • Margaret Miller-Fitts in memory of Terry Thompson
  • Mary Lynn Miller-Sopher
  • Dr. and Mrs. Dan Nichols in loving memory of Judy Meredith Robinson
  • David Nichols in loving memory of Katherine Stubbs
  • Kathy Okelley in loving memory of Susan Smith Novac
  • Kathy Peacock in memory of Dr. John Haynes
  • Mary Ruth Roberts-Hudson
  • Diane Nichols Rogers
  • Henry Quinn
  • Sandra Ragsdale Sanders
  • Julie Barr Rhodes in memory of Shirley Clements
  • Donald Sherman
  • Lisa Parks Sloterdijk
  • Linda Smith in loving memory of Steven and Susan Smith
  • Bill and Debbie Vaughan
  • Debra Ragsdale Venn
  • Mr. and Mrs. Wayne Wasson in loving memory of Judy Meredith Robinson
  • George Welch
  • Frances Whatley in loving memory of Shirley Clements
  • Kathy Wren in loving membory of Shirley Clements

Board of Atlanta Grade School Friends

President

Jane Cook Barnhill

Vice President

Kevin Stingley

Treasury

Danny Stanley

Secretary

Cyndy Vaughan-Chamblee

Members

Lee Ellen Arnold Benjamin
Gina Clements
Camille Smith Dawn
Margaret Miller Fitts
Paula Harp
Jeanie Jackson
James Joslin
Judy Waldon Lanier
Donna Rice
Phil Rice
Leigh Walker Stanley