Spared from demolition, 1920s black schoolhouse being saved

A one-room schoolhouse built in the 1920s to teach black children on St. Simons Island is making a comeback from years of rot and neglect.

Preservationists saved the Harrington School from scheduled demolition in 2010 and since then have spent about $300,000 to stabilize its deteriorating frame and leaky roof. Recently, the group Friends of the Harrington School announced a grant award that it hopes will bring in $50,000 needed to finish restoring the schoolhouse's interior.

Amy Roberts, director of the St. Simons African-American Heritage Coalition, attended 1st and 2nd grade at the school in the 1950s when many black descendants of slaves remained on the island.

Roberts says she "went a little crazy" when officials wanted to tear down the building. She says the restored schoolhouse is looking "gorgeous."