Community leader and educator B.M. Montgomery established a school for black children in the 1920s in Rosedale Park. They initially met in Montgomery’s home. Sometimes in the 1930s a wooden building was built up on the hill in the northeastern section of the community. The school was damaged by fire twice and some think that the Klan may have been involved in those fires. 

A building made of native rocks and masonry was constructed by the works progress administration to replace the wooden structure. It was built on four acres of property donated by local businessman Damon Lee, Sr. The building opened in 1944.

Rosedale initially taught elementary school students. The administrators and teachers made an effort to teach advanced grades and include foreign language in the curriculum. Rosedale was the first of the Jefferson County schools for black children to teach grades above the junior high level. 

Over 1,100 students graduated from Rosedale School from 1937 to 1968.

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This photo is from the Jefferson County Board of Equalization Appraisal Files, which are located in the basement of the LIn-Henley Research Library.