South Carolina Picture Project
South Carolina Picture Project

Hopewell School and Church — Clarks Hill, South Carolina

SC Picture Project  |  McCormick County  |  Hopewell School and Church

Adopt A South Carolina Landmark
Hopewell School and Church

Hopewell Baptist Church was town down on January 17, 2019. We are working to learn more about what happened.

Hopewell Rosenwald School was built in 1926 to serve the black students of Clarks Hill during the era of racial segregation. Between 1917 and 1932, nearly 500 schools were constructed in South Carolina to educate African-American children. Called Rosenwald Schools, they were named in honor of Julius Rosenwald, then-president of Sears and Roebuck, who helped provide funds to assist in their construction. Though the area now known as McCormick County had boasted two well-known and long-established schools for several generations – John de la Howe School and Willington Academy – they served white children only. No local schools for black students existed until the years following the Civil War.

Hopewell Church and School

Bill Fitzpatrick of Taylors, 2012 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Most Rosenwald Schools were sponsored by a local black church either through land or financial donations – or both – and usually adopted the church’s name. This school sat on four acres owned by adjacent Hopewell Baptist Church (seen above; now demolished), which donated land for the school, and is surrounded by dense forest currently owned by the South Carolina Department of Wildlife and Marine Resources.

Hopewell Rosenwald School

Bill Fitzpatrick of Taylors, 2012 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent

Hopewell was built as a typical one-teacher school in accordance with Rosenwald’s “One-Teacher Community School Plan.” Plans for all Rosenwald Schools, regardless of size, called for large windows and an orientation that allowed for maximum light and ventilation. Though this building is small, there are actually three separate rooms within the structure: A large room used as the classroom and two smaller rooms, one of which is now a kitchen.

Hopewell Baptist Church

Hopewell School’s church sponsor, as described above, was Hopewell Baptist Church. The church, founded in 1864, was torn down on January 17, 2019. To see a list of internments in the Hopewell churchyard, please click here.

Hopewell Baptist Church, Demolished

Lee Hartley of North Augusta, 2019 © Do Not Use Without Written Consent
(This image was taken the evening the church was torn down: January 17, 2019.)

We are eager to learn more about the Hopewell Church and Rosenwald School if you can help!

Hopewell Rosenwald School

Hopewell School was one of two Rosenwald Schools built in McCormick County. The other school – Gilbert Rosenwald School – burned and is no longer extant. Today Hopewell School is owned and maintained by Hopewell Baptist Church as a fellowship hall. Hopewell Rosenwald School is listed in the National Register:

The Hopewell Rosenwald School, built in 1926, is significant in the areas of education, African American heritage, and architecture. Hopewell is a One Teacher Community Plan school, embodying the distinctive architectural characteristics that fall under the guidelines set out by the Julius Rosenwald School Building Program from 1913 to 1932. Though it appears from the exterior to be a one room school house, inside are two smaller rooms and one large room. The larger space was reserved as the class room. Hopewell was built, along with one other Rosenwald school in McCormick County, at a cost of $400 per school. Hopewell is the only Rosenwald School remaining in the county.

Hopewell greatly impacted the education of rural McCormick County’s African American students from 1927 to 1954. By 1954, Hopewell’s enrollment dropped to only nine students as many of the African American families left the area for better opportunities. The school was then left for the benefit and use of the community. Because South Carolina’s white students and schools were afforded more, African American schools, especially in rural counties such as McCormick, were extremely important in the education they provided, the safe environment they gave, and the belief that if students studied and did their best, they could better their future and community. The history of Hopewell Rosenwald School shows its impact on McCormick County’s educational and black heritage landscape for just such provisions and aspirations.

Hopewell Church and School: Help Us Learn More

Please fill in one or more fields based on your knowledge. We really appreciate your help, and we will credit you for your contribution. Learn more about our Adopt A Landmark program. Thank you!


Hopewell School and Church Info

Address: 253 Hopewell Church Road, Clarks Hill, SC 29821
GPS Coordinates: 33.609805,-82.124517

Hopewell School and Church Map

Please Share Your Thoughts!

Did you enjoy this page? Do you have any information we should add? Send us your comments below — we can't wait to hear from you!


Join Us on Facebook
Search for Landmarks


Abbeville ACE Basin Adams Run Aiken Allendale Anderson Awendaw Bamberg Banks Barns & Farms Barnwell Batesburg-Leesville Beaches Beaufort Beech Island Belton Bennettsville Bishopville Blackville Bluffton Bridges Bygone Landmarks Camden Carnegie Libraries Cayce Cemeteries Charleston Charleston Navy Base Cheraw Chester Chesterfield Churches Clemson Clinton Clio Colleges Columbia Conway Cordesville Courthouses Darlington Daufuskie Island Denmark Dillon Donalds Easley Edgefield Edisto Elloree Fairfax Florence Folly Beach Forests and Nature Preserves Fort Mill Fountain Inn Gaffney Garden City Beach Georgetown Glenn Springs Graniteville Greeleyville Greenville Greenwood Greer Hamburg Hampton Hardeeville Hartsville Hemingway Hilton Head Historical Photos Historic Houses Honea Path Hopkins Huger Hunting Island Isle of Palms Jails James Island Jamestown Johns Island Johnsonville Johnston Kiawah Island Kingstree Lake City Lake Marion Lakes Lancaster Landrum Latta Laurens Lexington Libraries Lighthouses Little River Manning Marion McClellanville McCormick Military Mills Moncks Corner Mountains Mount Carmel Mount Pleasant Mullins Murrells Inlet Myrtle Beach National Register Newberry Ninety Six North Augusta North Charleston North Myrtle Beach Orangeburg Pacolet Parks Pawleys Island Pendleton Pickens Piers Pinopolis Plantations Pomaria Port Royal Post Offices Ravenel Restaurants Ridge Spring Ridgeway Rivers Roadside Oddities Robert Mills Rock Hill Rockville Rosenwald Schools Salters Saluda Savannah River Site SC Artists SC Heroes of the Alamo Schools Seneca Shrimp Boats Society Hill Spartanburg Sports Springs St. George St. Helena Island St. Matthews Stateburg Stores Sullivan's Island Summerton Summerville Sumter Sunset Sunsets Synagogues Town Clocks Trains & Depots Trees Trenton Troy Turbeville Ulmer Union Wadmalaw Island Walhalla Walterboro Waterfalls Water Towers West Columbia Westminster Winnsboro Woodruff Yemassee York