While that became the formal name of the new consolidated institution, everyone found it easier to refer to the school informally by the well-known name, "Mather," which continues today.
In 1983, the Methodist Women's Division, formerly the Women's Home Missionary Society and now part of the General Board of Global Ministries, closed Boylan-Haven-Mather Academy because of the Board's new mission priorities, rising costs, and the school's declining enrollment brought on by integration and increased educational opportunities in the public sector. The Women's Division ordered all of the buildings torn down in 1995 and sold part of the land in 1997 for commercial use.
Although Mather no longer exists physically, its spirit lives on in the hearts of students, faculty and friends whose every kind word and deed is greatly influenced by the nearly 100 years of educational excellence and service this school gave to the nation.
AT LEFT: Hubbard Hall, Mather Academy's school
Boylan-Haven-Mather Academy NATIONAL ALUMNI ASSOCIATION
Mather's combination of black students co-existing with white and black teachers and administrators in a harshly segregated society made it a comparative "oasis" of race relations. Persons associated with the school were regularly ostracized and snubbed by the public.
During the 1930's, Mather even offered adult night and teacher preparatory courses. The gymnasium and auditorium in the new Browning Home administration building/girls' dormitory --- a rarity for any school in those days --- were the preferred sites in the region for many sporting events, concerts, pageants and plays. The Christmas Pageant attracted a large cross-section of the Camden community.
Boys' dorm, Bryan Hall, built in 1950
The Boylan-Haven School in Florida, which formed when those schools joined forces in 1932, merged with Mather Academy in 1959, creating Boylan-Haven-Mather Academy.
BELOW: Cross-shaped school building, built in 1964. Classroooms and offices comprised the "horizontal crossbar." The gymnasium was the "vertical post."
In 1946, Mather's Principal Lulu B. Bryan invited civil rights activist W.E.B. Du Bois to speak at that year's commencement or the school's anniversary in February 1947. Click the title to view their letters on the web.
(NOTE: Tallahassee, FL is erroneously referred to as the Boylan-Haven School's location, instead of Jacksonville, FL.)