1843 - CHURCH/SCHOOL
Churches existed prior to the Civil War, often without denominational
attachments. A building was set
aside for the African American families to read the ”Good Book” (Bible), and
sing old slave hymns. Although most
could not read, those who could read, read to others.
As long as the people held on to the “Good Book”, they knew they had
to live right to be blessed by God, and have a better life.
The structure was also known as the first school house. The structure sat
northeast of Master Holland’s home.
1894/1920 - 2ND
In late 1890’s, the second African American school house, Holland High,
had a new location behind the present Pine Grove Baptist Church.
1920/1930 - 3RD
The third school was a two-story wood framed building, which sat north
west of Holland Quarters Cemetery.
The top floor consisted of a large chapel and one classroom with a front
gallery (porch). The only way in or
out of the top floor/rooms was to go down the inside stairs to the ground floor.
The ground floor consisted of four large rooms and an outside gallery
that covered three-fourths of the building (front and both sides).
When Holland High (Walton Common School District #12) consolidated with
Winder’s School District (located behind the refinery in Carthage), the
students transferred to the “Quarters”.
Up to the 1925/26 school year, students only had to complete seven grades
in school. As principal, Professor
John A. Chappell made it possible for students to remain in school another three
years. Those who had already completed the 7th grade could return if they so
desired. Completing the 10th grade
would insure students of a chance to graduate and receive a diploma.
Professor Chappell’s last year as principal for the “Quarters” was
1926. He was not at the school when
the first graduates graduated in 1927. Professor
and Mrs. Chappell transferred to Shady Grove Long Branch.
Chappell, his wife Mamie Sylvia Cayton, and their infant daughter, Catherine,
are laid to rest in the HQ Cemetery.
1927 - 1ST
Completed the 10th grade
Principal: Professor W. H. Henry
Teacher: Agnes T. Taylor
Miss Taylor and Professor Henry began their teaching career in the
“Quarters” at the same time in 1926. Miss
Taylor taught 1926/27 school year, the students she taught were the first to
graduate after completing the 10th grade.
1. Annie Lou
married LeRoy Chester “L. C.” Lister
Eddie, Jr. married
Being the first five students to graduate from the “Quarters” they
felt the need to leave a mark for their accomplishments.
For their achievements they planted a sycamore tree at the end of the
walkway from the school.
A rock walkway lead from the steps of the school to the sycamore tree.
1954 - 4TH PUBLIC Panola County Training Center SCHOOL
Principal: Professor Harris
In 1917, Julius Rosenwald established the Julius Rosenwald Fund, which
provided gifts for education, including part of the costs for the construction
of more than 4,500 schools for African Americans in 15 southern states.
The Panola County Training Center was one of the many Julius Rosenwald
schools. The structure sat in the
same place as the third school for the “Quarters”.
The dedication was conducted by Mr. Owens in 1931.
Principal: Professor Eugene Dicks
Professor Dicks was also the school’s 1st Vocational Agricultural
Teacher. Since he could not hold
both positions, he gave up his position as principal to Professor John I. Hill
in order to continue teaching the students.
Principal: Professor John I. Hill
The structure had only one level with six classrooms, a coat rack and a
main attraction for the school was the three large windows in the front of the
building. The structure was much
different from the other school buildings.
Professor Windom “W. H.” Coss was the second Vocational Agricultural
Teacher. He and the high school
students transferred from Holland High to Turner High School (a school for
African Americans) in the Carthage Independent School District.
John A. Huey and his wife Willie Mae Reddick ran a boarding house for the
teachers, west of the school.
Fall 1948 - THE
The upper grade students were bussed to Turner High school.
A. J. Brown, my grandfather, was one of the first bus drivers to
transport the children.
Summer 1954 -
In the summer of ‘54, when the 1953/54 school year ended, the teachers
and students knew that the Panola County Training Center, which was the fourth
school for the community would be torn down.
The construction of the new West Side Elementary School would be built in
The fifth and final school was under construction; the construction of
the building would last through the summer break.
Special care was taken at this time.
This would be the first elementary school and the 1st school for the
“Quarters” to be constructed of brick. When it was time for the doors to
open, the school was not yet completed.
A decision had to be made as to where the teachers would teach the
elementary children. The older
children were already being bussed into Carthage to attend Turner High School.
There were only two places that could accommodate the needs of the
teachers and students. One place to
consider was Pine Grove Baptist Church. Lola
Bell Brown-Johns taught 1st and 2nd graders, and Suscelia
Chappell-Chadwick-Lucas taught 4th graders.
Lola Bell married Lee Frederick “Dick” Johns and to this union no
children were born. She and her
husband were descendants of Holland Quarters.
She taught for years, in the Walton Common School District and in the
Carthage Independent School District. On
June 26, 1985, cousin Lola Bell died and was laid to rest in the HQ cemetery
beside her husband Dick Johns.
Mrs. Suscelia Chappell-Chadwick-Lucas, was born on February 28, 1923, in
Terrell, Kaufman County, Texas, to the parentage of John Alonzo and Mamie Sylvia
Cayton-Chappell. She was an infant
when her parents moved to Panola County to continue their teaching careers and
raise a family.
Mrs. Lucas taught the children of the children that her parents taught in
The other option for the children was the lower level of the Masonic
1954/1-1955 - OPEN
Now with the incompletion of West Side Elementary School, the children of
the fifties made a difference. The
Old Masonic Hall was now open to teach the children.
Professor Andrew Jackson “A. J.” Hudson, and Mrs. Annie Lou
Rayson-Lister were allowed to take their classes inside the Hall.
Mr. Hudson taught 3rd and 7th grade on the west side of the lower level.
His roll top desk sat in the far west corner of the room.
Even though Mr. Hudson was much older and larger in size than Mrs.
Lister, she had the largest number of children to teach.
Mrs. Lister stands only 5’1” tall, and most of the 40+ students of
the 5th and 6th grade were larger in size than she was. She was small in size,
but big on teaching.
When the heavy rains came in November of 1954, Mrs. Lister took her
students to the church to join Mrs. Johns and Mrs. Lucas.
Mr. Hudson remained in the Hall with his students.
1955/1969 - 5TH
Side Elementary SCHOOL
Principal: Professor Andrew Jackson “A. J.”
Teachers: Mrs. Lister, Mrs. Johns, Mrs. Lucas and
In January of 1955, the doors to the school were finally opened and the
children, grades 1-7, were able to enter.
The building was constructed of Red Brick.
The single level structure had four rooms, an auditorium, a kitchen and
(at last) inside restroom facilities. The
school sat north west of the HQ cemetery.
The students and teachers transferred to the white public schools in the
Carthage Independent School District. Dr.
Martin Luther King’s dream came to pass, and the African Americans and whites
were being taught together.
day care center
Inside West Side Elementary School building.
There are only a couple of surviving teachers of the “Quarters”.
Most of the 40+ baby boomers who attended school under the guidance of
Mrs. Lister, still live within the “Quarters”.