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W. S. Hoole Special Collections Library Manuscript Collections

Guide to the Staci Niemeyer paper "Folk Dancing at the Marietta Johnson School of Organic Education" MSS.0525

ASSET VIEWER
Publication:

University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Box 870266
Tuscaloosa, Alabama, 35487-0266
205.348.0500
archives@ua.edu

February 2008

Creation:

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2013-04-04T10:13-0500

Language Usage:

English

Description Rules:

Describing Archives: A Content Standard

April 2013
Collection Title:

Staci Niemeyer paper "Folk Dancing at the Marietta Johnson School of Organic Education"

Unit ID:

MSS.0525

Repository:

University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Quantity:

0.05 Linear feet (1 item, 17 pieces)

Dates:

1990 April 1

Abstract:

Essay about folk dancing at the Marietta Johnson School of Organic Education, a school founded in 1907 by progressive educator Marietta Johnson in Fairhope, Alabama.

Preferred Citation:

Staci Niemeyer paper "Folk Dancing at the Marietta Johnson School of Organic Education", W.S. Hoole Special Collections Library, University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama.

Scope and Contents note

The collection contains an essay about folk dancing at the Marietta Johnson School of Organic Education, a school founded in 1907 in Fairhope, Alabama. Marietta Johnson was a well-known progressive educator who founded this school in south Alabama that allows children to learn without examinations or grades.

Processing Information:

Processed by

Megan Quillivan and Donnelly Lancaster Walton, 2007; updated by Martha Bace, 2013

Acquisition Information:

Gift of Staci Niemeyer, 1990

Biographical/Historical note

Born in 1864, Marietta Johnson, a native of Minnesota, was an educator who believed in the organic or natural education of children. Mrs. Johnson had been a teacher in the normal system in Minnesota and had radical ideas on education reform. She felt that children should live natural lives, study the outdoors, not be forced to read at too young an age. In 1902 she moved to Fairhope, Alabama, where she opened the School of Organic Education in 1907. In 2007, the Marietta Johnson School of Organic Education celebrated its 100th anniversary.

In her "organic" school, tests were not administered, homework was withheld until high school, and grades were unknown. She required hand crafts and folk dancing along with the traditional academic curriculum. Her school was a magnet to young teachers and to artists, and was instrumental in building the reputation of Fairhope as an artists' colony. Encouraged and funded by friends in the small experimental community of Fairhope, Alabama, Mrs. Johnson began her revolutionary school on a ten-acre campus -- teaching, writing, training teachers in her method. Her little school attracted national attention, and she was one of the founders of the Progressive Education Association.

The school reached its zenith in the 1920s, in part because of John Dewey's book and its reference to Mrs. Johnson and her school. Through the great depression, two world wars and Mrs. Johnson's death in 1938, the Organic School has never closed its doors and is still operating in Fairhope.

Access Restrictions:

None

Usage Restrictions:

None

Source(s)

Johnson, Marietta (Marietta Louise Pierce), 1864-1938 (Library_of_Congress_Name_Authority_File)

School of Organic Education (Fairhope, Ala.). (Library_of_Congress_Name_Authority_File)

Alabama (localbroad)

Alabama--History--1819-1950 (lcsh)

Education (localbroad)

Education--Alabama (lcsh)

Essays (aat)

Folk dancing (lcsh)

Music and Performing Arts (localbroad)

Students (localbroad)

Teacher (localbroad)

Paper Box 2826