Linden, TX Tourism
The Pleasant Hill School in Linden, Cass County, Texas was built in 1925 with funds from the Julius Rosenwald School Building Program which was established in 1917 for the advancement of Negro education in the rural south. The building is an excellent example of a school modeled on Community School Plan #20 – the 2 teacher school shown in the 1924 publication “Community School Plans”. The building retains its original configuration and characteristics of the type including the gable roof with exposed rafter ends, wood siding and large multi-pane windows. The total cost of construction was $3,450. The Julius Rosenwald Foundation records show that the Foundation granted $700, the Negro community contributed $700, and the public contributed $2,050.
Of the 527 Rosenwald schools originally built in Texas, only 28 extant Rosenwald schools have been identified. Seventy of these schools were built in East Texas, with 23 built in Cass County. The Pleasant Hill School is the surviving Rosenwald school in Cass County. Quitman Warren, Sr., a member of the Pleasant Hill Baptist Church, donated the land for the school and for a new church for the congregation (Pleasant Hill Baptist Church is the second oldest black congregation in Texas). The school opened in 1925 with two teachers, Della Lindsay Warren and Professor R. S. Guise, and an enrollment of 70 students. The school featured two classrooms. A third room, labeled “Community Room” on Community School plans, was referred to as the kitchen at Pleasant Hill School and was also used as a third classroom. An enclosed well on the school grounds provided water, which was drawn with a bucket and rope and then poured into a barrel. A trough extended from the barrel into the building, and a faucet inside controlled the water. An outdoor privy furnished sanitary facilities until indoor bathrooms were added in the early 1950s. The building was heated with wood stoves in the winter, lighted when necessary by gas lanterns or lamps and air circulation consisted of hand fans. In February 1942, the school received electric service.
By 1964 the student population of Pleasant Hill School had dwindled to 26. The school closed and the students were transferred to the school in Linden. The Pleasant Hill School is on the National Register of Historic Places.