In the 1930s in rural Arkansas, school district consolidation rendered obsolete many of the hundreds of little one-room schoolhouses that dotted the state. They often were replaced by larger schools constructed by the WPA using local craftsmen. This one-story, frame, four-room structure, situated close to the highway and shaded by old oaks, is a well-preserved example. On the west and the north, the two double-door entrances, framed by Doric pilasters, are sheltered by steeply gabled porches supported on box columns. Illuminating the interior and enlivening the simple rectangular building are banks of tall multipaned windows. When the school closed in 1949 following the school district’s consolidation with Sheridan’s, it became the Center Grove Methodist Church. The congregation has been remarkably respectful of the building through the years. Except for the addition of a small steeple, the exterior remains unaltered. On the interior, two classrooms were combined to form the sanctuary, a third was subdivided into Sunday School rooms, and a fourth was left unchanged, its blackboard and cloakroom intact. The combination of church and school functions has a long history in the state, as many of the early one-room schools constructed by members of the community doubled as churches on Sunday.
You are here
Center Grove Methodist Church (Oak Grove School)
If SAH Archipedia has been useful to you, please consider supporting it.
SAH Archipedia tells the story of the United States through its buildings, landscapes, and cities. This freely available resource empowers the public with authoritative knowledge that deepens their understanding and appreciation of the built environment. But the Society of Architectural Historians, which created SAH Archipedia with University of Virginia Press, needs your support to maintain the high-caliber research, writing, photography, cartography, editing, design, and programming that make SAH Archipedia a trusted online resource available to all who value the history of place, heritage tourism, and learning.