The Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation announced the recipients of its Callahan Incentive Grant, a matching grant given to nonprofit or government organizations undertaking the rehabilitation of a historic building or site in Georgia. Made possible by Barbara and Les Callahan, long-time supporters of the Georgia Trust, the grant totaling $10,000 was awarded to the Cherry Grove Schoolhouse in Washington, Ga. and the Erskine Fountain located in Atlanta’s Grant Park.
“The Georgia Trust is grateful to the Callahan family for its generous donation. We believe the grants contributed by them will help our recipients to accomplish their noteworthy preservation goals,” said Mark C. McDonald, president and CEO of the Georgia Trust. “Both projects funded by this year’s grant will create particularly significant impacts in their local communities,” McDonald added.
The Callahan Incentive Grant was awarded to the following recipients:
Cherry Grove Schoolhouse (Washington)
The Friends of Cherry Grove Schoolhouse, Inc. have been awarded $7,500 to assist with the next phase of the schoolhouse’s rehabilitation. This includes the repair of the wood siding, soffit and fascia, as well as the installation of eight windows.
The Cherry Grove Schoolhouse is a rare surviving example of an early 20th century, rural African American school building in Georgia. The one-room, wood frame building was constructed c.1910 on the grounds of the Cherry Grove Baptist Church, which was founded in 1875. The schoolhouse suffered from years of neglect and lack of maintenance due to the financial realities of a small, rural congregation and was included on the Georgia Trust’s 2021 “Places in Peril” list.
Following a historic structures report completed by the University of Georgia, the building’s foundation and chimney have been stabilized and the roof has been repaired. Once rehabilitation is completed, the Cherry Grove Schoolhouse will serve as a teaching tool about the evolution of education for African American children who grew up in rural farming communities in Wilkes County, Georgia, and the South.
Grant Park’s Erskine Fountain (Atlanta)
Grant Park Conservancy was awarded $2,500 for the second phase of the site’s restoration, which includes the beautification of the space around the Erskine Fountain with landscaping and the installation of a cobblestone and paver entryway, as well as interpretative signage.
The Erskine Fountain, an intricate bronze water feature surrounded by a large marble bench, was originally donated to the city of Atlanta in 1896 to celebrate the life of Judge John Erskine. The fountain was relocated from Peachtree Street to Grant Park in 1912. Unfortunately, over the decades it suffered severe deterioration.
The restoration of the bronze casting, marble bench and foundation and internal plumbing of the fountain has already been completed as part of the first phase of the project. Grant Park Conservancy will partner with both Friends of Erskine and the Daffodil Project on the second phase of the site’s restoration. Once complete, the site will once again provide a natural and joyous environment for connecting families, friends and the two million visitors Grant Park draws annually.
About the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation:
Founded in 1973, the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation works for the preservation and revitalization of Georgia’s diverse historic resources and advocates their appreciation, protection and use.
As one of the country’s leading statewide, nonprofit preservation organizations, the Trust generates community revitalization by finding buyers for endangered properties acquired by its Revolving Fund and raises awareness of other endangered historic resources through an annual listing of Georgia’s Places in Peril. The Trust recognizes preservation projects and individuals with its annual Preservation Awards and awards students and young professionals with the Neel Reid Prize and Liz Lyon Fellowship. The Trust offers a variety of educational programs, provides technical assistance to property owners and historic communities, advocates for funding, tax incentives and other laws aiding preservation efforts, and manages two house museums in Atlanta (Rhodes Hall) and Macon (Hay House). To learn more, visit www.GeorgiaTrust.org.