The George Washington Carver Memorial, Inc. was established to help provide for the historical, educational, cultural and social needs of the community in which it is located.
In 1937, Dr. George Washington Carver came to Fulton, Missouri to dedicate the new elementary school named in his honor and established for the children of the black community. The school has served as a focal point for the established black community of Fulton. No longer used as a public school, the building was purchased from the school district in 1989 by a dedicated group of Carver Elementary alumni and supporters. They wanted to revitalize the building and establish it as a historical site commemorating the historical significance of Carver Elementary and the legacy of Dr. Carver’s visit to Fulton. Through a community effort the Carver building is now listed on the National Registry of Historic Sites. The building is being revitalized as a museum honoring Dr. Carver and as a community center for social, cultural and educational programs. It is privately owned by the George Washington Carver Memorial Incorporated, a not for profit corporation.
The building served as the elementary school for Fulton’s black children until 1968. When the elementary schools were racially desegregated, Carver was used as a middle school for all-sixth graders. Further changes in the school district during the 1980’s saw the sixth graders move on to another building and the Carver school closed. The building remained unused for a few years until the spring of 1989, when the George Washington Carver Memorial Corporation was formed and the Fulton Public School District agreed to allow it to use the building. Today the Carver Memorial board works to bring the building back to be the center of activity it was in former years.
Dr. Carver, a Diamond, Missouri native, was the catalyst in building the Tuskegee Institute, a black educational institute, where black students could get a college education when white institutions were closed to them. He is renowned for his work with plants discovering numerous uses for peanuts and sweet potatoes and thus opening the way for the increased production of these crops. While visiting Fulton, he is said to have proven the hedge apple to be edible. When Dr. Carver accepted the invitation to dedicate the new building in Fulton, he was 78 years old.
There are numerous schools throughout the country named after Dr. Carver honoring his great contribution to humankind. Historical documentation supports Dr. Carver personally dedicated the George Washington Carver Elementary School in Fulton, Missouri in 1937. His visit to Fulton left an indelible impression upon all segments of the community and is still remembered as an important milestone in Fulton’s history.
It is vital to the entire community to preserve the history of the black community of Fulton. Memorabilia of Dr. Carver, his historic visit and history of the Fulton black community are being collected for display. The memorial continually seeks re collections and artifacts relating to this area of local history. This memorabilia can be donated or loaned to the museum for exhibit.
- Iowa State University links to George Washington Carver Sites
- George Washington Carver National Monument
Dr. George Washington Carver Memorial, Inc.
1005 Nichols Street
Fulton, Missouri 65251
906 Westminster Avenue
Fulton Missouri 65251