Pottsville teachers resign to head south and open school for freedpeople – February 1867

On February 2, 1867, the Miners’ Journal of Pottsville announced that Fannie A. Couch and Hannah M. Streeper resigned as teachers in the city’s public school. The reason: they were headed south to Murfreesboro, Tennessee to open a school for emancipated slaves. The school was sponsored by prominent residents of Pottsville and the city’s newly founded Freedmen’s Relief Association.

Read our previous story on the Pottsville Freedmen’s Relief Association

From the Miners’ Journal: 

We understand that Miss F.A. Couch and Miss Hannah M. Streeper, both teachers in this Borough, have resigned their positions with the intention of going South to teach Freedmen. While we regret that our schools should lose the services of two such accomplished and successful teachers, yet we rejoice that the noble band of philanthropic teachers in the South is to be increased by those whose hearts are in the great work.

Many good wishes for their success.

The school they are to take charge of will be supported by the liberality of our citizens. We expect to make arrangements to keep our readers posted on their movements and success from time to time.

Teacher Resignations - Freedmen's Relief Association

Both teachers could not have realized the dangers they were likely to face in the former Confederate state that gave birth the Ku Klux Klan two years earlier, in December 1865.


Featured Image: Teachers in a Freedmen’s school in Virginia, 1866 (LOC)


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