Historic Markers Across Tennessee

Schools For Freedmen

Marker ID:  
Location: at the intersection of South Main Street and Beale Street, Memphis, TN
County: Shelby
Coordinates: N 35° 8.421    W 090° 3.278
  35.14035    -90.05463333
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: WM35HD


The first free "colored" school in the city was opened in early 1863 in a barrack building in South Memphis. In 1864 the U.S. Army issued a general order authorizing its officers to hep with these schools for the education of freedmen. In 1865 there were 9 schools here. All were burned during the May 1866 race riot. In 1868-69 there were again 9 schools in operation in various locations in the city. One of these schools was located in this area.

Erected 1980 by Shelby County Historical Commission.