A retired educator with an interest in the history of Appalachian missions, Betty Jamerson Reed has rigorously researched the lives of three school founders. Reed spotlights Sophia Sawyer, a committed instructor of Cherokees; Emily Prudden, a master builder of fifteen schools; and Martha Berry, an untrained educator who turned ignorant boys and girls into active learners. The author, a graduate of Bryan College, reveals details of their battle to overcome barriers confronting the youth of Appalachia. Reed’s previous books identified the accomplishments of black and white educators in their crusade to overcome the limitations of a segregated education: The Brevard Rosenwald School: Black Education and Community Building in a Southern Appalachian Town, 1920-1966 (McFarland, 2004) and School Segregation in Western North Carolina: A History, 1860s-1970s (McFarland, 2011).


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