No Destination: Frenchburg School Campus

Driving into Frenchburg, I noticed several abandoned buildings behind the Sav-A-Lot that piqued by interest. The three large brick buildings were completely out of place. Finding information, even with the internet, proved difficult at first.

The Frenchburg School opened in 1909 by the Presbyterian church. It provided religious, educational and medical services to regional residents. In fact, for several years after the opening of its hospital in 1915, Frenchburg had the only hospital located between Lexington and Ashland. (Note: Watch this YouTube video created in 1944 featuring Frenchburg physician Dr. Richard Adler - it is very interesting.) The Frenchburg School also provided the only high school educational offering in the county (despite state law mandates).

The three brick buildings I saw were the School Building (c. 1910, two-story), the Girls' Dormitory (c.1917, three-story Georgian Revival) and the Hospital Building (c. 1941, Neo-Georgian replacing original 1915 structure lost to fire). In their hayday, the buildings would have been typical of the "classical renaissance that developed in the late 19th century ... suitable for an academic setting."

The buildings have been vacant since at least 1978, when the site was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Application was a source of much of the information in this post is available here (PDF).