MUSIC LEGEND TINA TURNER’S SCHOOLHOUSE TO BE PRESERVED IN BROWNSVILLE

Apr 17 2012 BROWNSVILLE, TENN.

 Flagg Grove School, in the Nutbush community, is one of only a few remaining African-American schoolhouses in Haywood County. The Brownsville Board of Mayor and Aldermen voted recently to help preserve the school where music legend Tina Turner once attended grade school by funding its move to the West Tennessee Delta Heritage Center. Once at the center, the school will be restored and become a part of the center's permanent exhibits.

"I'm pleased to know that children from around the world who stop at the Visitor's Center in Brownsville will be able to visualize what it was like growing up during the era of my childhood," Tina Turner said.

The one-room school has significant historical value for the community and can be tied directly to Turner's ancestry. The land the school is built on was bought from Benjamin Flagg in 1889. Flagg was a former slave who came from North Carolina after the Civil War. He was also the brother of George Flagg, Turner's great-grandfather. The school closed in the 1960s and has since been used as a barn.

"Ideally, we would love to preserve Flagg Grove School on its original acre of ground," said Delta Heritage Center Director Sonia Outlaw-Clark, "but since this is not possible, it just makes sense to move it where it can be restored and seen by the most people."

The building, along with other artifacts found in the school, is being donated to the center by local restaurateurs Pam and Joe Stephens. The building has been owned by the Stephens family since the late 60s.

To learn more about the center, visit www.westtnheritage.com or call 731-779-9000.

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