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Algoma Schools
Pontotoc County, Mississippi

The first school in Algoma was held in a brush arbor about the year of 1894. Miss Lany Holland attended school there and later taught there for six years to begin her half-century teaching career. The early two-teacher school was guided by Mr. Bill Mauldin, Principal and Miss Nannie Jernigan, Assistant Principal.

In 1901 Miss Vernon Calloway taught Algoma's one room school. During that year a storm hit the school. All the children escaped unharmed but the school had to have a few repairs. Soon afterwards old Algoma and the surrounding community schools were consolidated with the new school erected at the old Algoma site. About 1911, the building was destroyed by fire, and was replaced with a two-story frame building. That building was torn down to make room for a new modern, brick building which was completed in the summer of 1930.

Fernando Haire was the first principal. Among the first teachers at the various schools in Algoma were Mr. Ollie Spencer, Miss Annie Heartly, Miss Vernon Calloway, and Miss Laney Holland.

Recognizing the need for a gymnasium at the school, parents, students, faculty, and the entire community set out to build one. This endeavor began around the 1948-49 school year and was accomplished purely by volunteer effort. Volunteers hauled used lumber from Camp McCain to the construction site to build the gym. The hardwood floor from the officer's recreation center at Camp McCain was carefully taken up and brought to Algoma and installed in the new gym. It was only used for a short time because in 1953 the gym burned. In 1954 a new gymnasium was contructed at Algoma and was then considered the best and most modern in the county. It is still standing at its original site.

The brick school remained until the summer of 1966, when it was totally destroyed by fire. Mr. H. F. Magers was principal at the time. In the fall of 1966 a frame building was built to replace the brick one. School was held in this frame building until the consolidation in the school year of 1971-72. This consolidation became known as the South Pontotoc Attendance Center, known far and wide as the SOUTH PONTOTOC COUGARS!

Submitted by: Peggy Aron Young