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Marion’s historic Lincoln School District receives National Register designation

Phillips Memorial Auditorium on the campus of Lincoln School is among the sites now designated a historic district on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Alabama Historical Commission recently announced that the Lincoln Normal School District was listed on the National Register of Historic Places by the United States Department of the Interior on November 29, 2022. The District (the historic Lincoln School Campus) is located 205 Lincoln Street, Marion, Alabama (Perry County). It is bounded to the north by Lincoln Street, to the south by College Street, to the east by Lee Street, and to the west by Booker Street. It is owned by the Lincolnite Club, Inc. Lincoln School was incorporated in 1867 and closed in 1970. It functioned for 103 years.

The National Register of Historic Places is the official list of the nation’s cultural resources worthy of preservation. Authorized under the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the National Register is part of a national program to coordinate and support public and private efforts to identify, evaluate and protect our historic and archaeological resources.

Acquisition of the Lincoln Normal School District National Register of Historic Places Listing is a beneficial milestone for the Lincolnite Club, Inc. in its mission and efforts to preserve, revitalize, and perpetuate the legacy of Lincoln School. The Listing will enhance our eligibility and participation opportunities to collaborate and capitalize in pursuing additional federally funded preservation grants, projects and the implementation of Lincolnite initiatives to provide awareness and strategic plans of action for maintaining and maximizing the preservation, accessibility and use of the entire District. It will promote community pride and will serve as an incentive to increase tourism in the community. The achievement will also serve as a motivational challenge for increasing active Lincolnite Club membership, support, participation, and service in promotion of the mission.

Lincolnite Club members were most appreciative of community and alumni support and participation in helping with the acquisition of the district’s listing. Finally, the National Register listing will further establish the historic significance of the Lincoln Normal School District in the areas of education; promotion of Black ethnic culture; participation impact in social history including the modern Civil Rights Movement which promoted and improved political, economic, social, and educational changes and opportunities; and the architectural construction depictions of Classical Revival design of Phillips Memorial Auditorium. The achievement is a success story with a visionary incentive to maximize the preservation, accessibility, maintenance, management, and appropriate use of the site for now and future generations. Lincolnite School greatly impacted the lives of its students and the community; therefore in appreciation, let us collectively keep the legacy alive. Additional detailed information is forthcoming.

The Rev. Richard Bryant is the National President of the Lincolnite Club. Attorney Robert H. Turner, Sr. is Chairman of the Board of Trustees. Mrs. Willie M. Crews is Vice President and Vice-Chair of the Board of Trustees. Ms. Mary Lue Essex is the public Point of Contact for the Lincolnite Club.