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County Looks to Transfer Former ‘Elkton Colored School’ to the Town of Elkton

Post Date:11/01/2019 9:37 AM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 1, 2019

BETHEL BOOTH PROPERTY 1

ELKTON, MD. – County Executive Alan McCarthy will put forth a resolution to the County Council on Tuesday, November 5th to initiate the transfer of the county-owned property located at 205 Booth Street to the Town of Elkton, a portion of which has been identified as the former ‘Elkton Colored School dating back to the 1800s.

This property was declared a surplus property by Cecil County Public Schools and the State Board of Education and was transferred to the County in 2017.

Under state law, the County must first prepare a resolution to authorize and enable the County to transfer the property, advertise the resolution for two weeks, and hold a public hearing before the County Council can move to adopt the resolution. If approved, the County will then convey the property to the Town for the nominal sum of $1.00. The transfer will take approximately two months to complete.

County Executive Alan McCarthy, Director of Administration Al Wein, and County Attorney Jason Allison recently met with Elkton Mayor Rob Alt, Town Commissioner Charles Givens, Director of Planning Jeanne Minner, Director of Building & Zoning Charles Bromwell, and Town Administrator Lewis George, along with Pastor R. Kevin Brown, Sr., and Reverend Annette L. Brown, both of Wright’s A.M.E. Church, and Professor Dale Glenwood Green, AAIA, of Morgan State University, to discuss the acquisition and future plans for the property.

Following the transfer of the property, the Town will negotiate a lease agreement with the Wright’s A. M. E. Church consistent with the Church’s plans to restore the ‘Elkton Colored School’ and renovate the balance of the building for community activities.

The lease conveyance of the property to the Wright’s A.M.E. Church and the restoration of the former ‘Elkton Colored School’ as a museum, along with renovation of the remainder of the building for community activities, presents an exciting opportunity for the public. There are still local residents within Cecil County who attended the school prior to the end of school segregation in the County in the mid-1950s. Former students and families will be invited to experience the restoration and preservation upon completion.

“It is an honor to redeem the building which served as the ‘Elkton Colored School’ for a great number of years during the days of segregation. There is a significant amount of history that lingers for those in Cecil County who attended and received their formal education there. Certainly, I was one of them in my early years of life,” said Commissioner Givens in a statement. “Hopefully, the building will be restored into an African American Museum to preserve the rich history of the school’s foundation.”

“I am very pleased to transfer this historic property over to the Town so that, ultimately, it can be restored and utilized,” said McCarthy. “The building has been vacant for many years and knowing that it will eventually be a welcoming place for many members of our community is very gratifying. I look forward to witnessing the rejuvenation of this centuries-old structure.”

Mr. Allison has requested that Mr. John Downs, attorney for the Town of Elkton, assist and coordinate with him regarding the legal aspects, including title work, deed preparation, and other legalities, necessary for settlement on the property.

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Media Contact:
Jennifer Lyall
Public Information Officer
Cecil County Government
jlyall@ccgov.org

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