Closure of Ballard Normal School

The AMA felt that the public and parochial schools were doing a good job of educating the local student population. The decision was made to reduce and eventually remove funding for its faculty. By 1938, only two AMA high schools were still in operation: Ballard Normal in Macon, Georgia, and Avery Institute in Charleston, South Carolina.  

Ballard was always proud of its the mixed-raced faculty that had led the school and students to greatness. But Georgia State law did not allow the use of a mixed-race faculty in public schools, so the majority of the teachers at Ballard either resigned or retired.   

So, in 1942, Ballard Normal moved to the public school system. As part of the transition, it was renamed Ballard. By 1944, the AMA had withdrawn its financial support but retained ownership of the property for a time before turning it over to the Bibb County Board of Education, who later sold the property as surplus. (Macon Telegraph May 23, 1942, page 11.)

The American Missionary Association (AMA) operated schools all over the state of Georgia. Of the original schools, only Atlanta University, known originally as Storrs, remains. It merged with Clark College in 1988 to form Clark Atlanta University. Here is a list of the AMA schools in Georgia: