• Note: Much of the history of the Richmond Public Schools was recorded in the context of a segregated society, and the reader should readily discern between pre- and post-desegregation observations. The terms "black," "colored," "Negro," and "white" in this booklet should not be considered offensive as they have been used according to the custom of the particular period. Since 1962, the division has omitted such racial designations from its reports and publications.

Springfield School

  • Corner of 26th & Leigh Streets

    In the early years of the school system, a "detached" school was operated at 26th & "M" Streets; it became known as Springfield because it was housed in the rented Springfield Hall (sometimes referred to as Springfield Temperance Hall). Presumably, the Springfield name was carried forward to a new school that was built in the area and occupied November 11,1880, with 248 pupils.

    The total cost of Springfield School ($6,578.27) included land, culverts, etc. In Apri11881, the Supervisor of School Property wrote: ''In the excavation of the basement, a spring of clear water was struck, and has caused some trouble during the past winter." A second story was added to this brick building- in 1887, giving the school a total of twelve rooms; rooms were added in 1904-05. This building was demolished in 1913; students were housed at old Bellevue during construction of the more modern replacement building. Additional land adjoining the school was purchased in the 1929-30 session.

    The elementary class for the deaf operated at Springfield in 1933-34. Springfield was the first white school on Church Hill to be converted into a Negro school. When this occurred in 1948, the name was changed to J. Andrew Bowler.

    Enrollment:
    1882-1883 240
    1914-1915 857
    June 1948 340 (final white)

    Architect:
    1914 Carneal & Johnston

    Cost:
    1914 $90,000

    Principals:
    1880-1884 Thomas A. Pollard
    1884-1886 George R. Pace
    1886-1892 William O. English
    1892-1901 Leroy S. Edwards
    1901-1910 Jesse H. Binford (Superintendent 1933-46)
    1910-1917 Algar Woolfolk
    1917-1921 Loyal C. Morrow
    1921-1942 Crawford Curry Crouch
    1942-1947 Alvin F. Beale
    1947-1948 Wortley W. Townsend

    See:
    J. Andrew Bowler School