Friday, October 9, 2009

2009 Places in Peril: Sallie Davis House, Milledgevile

The Story: The Sallie Davis House is the 1890 home of African American education pioneer Sallie Ellis Davis, who taught black children in Milledgeville. Sallie Ellis Davis was born in 1877 to an African American mother and Irish father. She attended schools in Baldwin County and Atlanta University. It was at the University that she developed a life-long friendship with W.E.B. DuBois. Sallie returned to Milledgeville and opened the home she bought in 1912 as a school to teach academics as well as life skills to African American children.

The Threat: Built in 1890, the house was owned by Sallie until her death in 1950. Sallie's will left the house to her cousins, who eventually sold the house in 1981. The house was continuously used as a residence until 1989, when the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia purchased it. The house is vacant and suffers from neglect, weathering, and vandalism.

The Solution: In 2003, a Certified Local Government grant was awarded to the City of Milledgeville for the Sallie Davis House, which funded an assessment and rehabilitation plan. Recently several involved groups, including UGA, have met to discuss the possible future uses of the Sallie Davis House.

Update: Georgia College and State University is prepared to complete the stabilization of the Sallie Davis House for an estimated cost of $25,000. A steering committee has been formed to lead this effort.

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