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Class 0610 - Stanton School History

Early Stanton School ClassAs of this writing, the Stanton Center is a bright, airy building on several levels with classrooms, offices, a gymnasium and fitness area, conference rooms, and a media center equipped with computers. It also has a modern, commercial kitchen and an historic classroom. It is ideally suited for its function as a multi-purpose community center for adults and children.

Originally, it had humble beginnings as a two-story wood frame school for elementary children, built on Washington Street shortly after 1889. Around 1900 a brick building was completed on the site through the efforts of Wiley H. Bates and Edwin Stanton. Wiley Bates was a colored alderman from the 4th Ward, and Edwin Stanton was the Secretary of War. They opened it as an industrial school for African American children in 1905. Later, a third floor was added for high school students. A fire destroyed this addition, and major rebuilding took place between 1913 - 1921. A stucco on masonry addition to the western side of the building was constructed between 1921 - 1930 with funds raised by the women of St. Phillip's and St. Anne's Episcopal churches. It combined both elementary and high school students, and later become a junior high school. The Stanton School continued as a school until 1964, when it was closed.

Stanton Community Center MuralTen years later in 1974, the City of Annapolis acquired the building for use as a community center. It took over two years to renovate. In June 2000, it opened as the newly refurbished Stanton Community Center, and is designated as a historic city building.

The Stanton Community Center's motto is, "Linking the past to the present through history, community, and services." Its mission is to improve the quality of life for all residents of Annapolis with a wide variety of human services, which include leisure and cultural activities, facilities and services that encourage health fitness, cultural enrichment and learning, and many opportunities for community involvement.

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