Monday, May 24, 2010

William Evans- Madison County, Georgia

The above image came from microfilm of the records of the Madison County, Georgia Poor School Fund for 1833. William Evans, parent, had three children enrolled in the pubic schools for Madison County: William, age 15; Sarah, age 11; and David, age 8. I feel certain that the fifteen year old William is William M. Evans, my great-great-great grandfather who died in Itawamba County in 1896.

Georgia was one of the first states in the South to establish funds for public school education. In 1822, the Georgia legislature established the "Poor School Fund" which became the state's first step toward a free public school system. Prior to the establishment of this fund, schools were funded primarily by tuition fees paid by the students. Although the "Poor School Fund" was a good idea, the benefits were limited and eventually the legislature discontinued funding. Not all counties took advantage of the funds, but Madison County did and thus William M. Evans received a public school education which served him well in his business dealings in Itawamba County. The 1891 edition of Goodspeed's Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Mississippi stated that William was "given the advantages of a common-school education in his native state" and indeed, he was.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

To all your blogging friends, if you will be traveling this Memorial Day Week-end, please drive safely, the life you save might be your own! I can almost taste foody items all your family brings to special times in Peaceful Valley. We will have St. Louis style ribs - and not much else. haha Youngest son and his son are in for the state meet for Special Olympics and they will eat with us before heading back to the Austin area. Have a great day however and wherever you spend it. bettye