The History of Bowling
Green Seminary for Women Alice Elizabeth Scott Chandler
(8/31/1839 - 6/27/1904), married William Timothy Chandler (Abt
1832 - 1/7/1901 in Bowling Green, Caroline County on 11/23/1858.
Both are buried at Lakewood Cemetery in Caroline, Virginia.
William Chandler, son of Francis Woolfolk Scott (1798 - 1863)
and Anna Maria Minor, was an attorney and a Civil War Veteran.
was educated at Buckingham Female Institute. in 1867,
she opened the "Home School for Girls" using
'Sherwood', her home in Bowling Green and taught 10 girls,
initially, with the assistance of 2 of her sisters - one
was Emma Byron Scott (2/24/1847 - 8/23/1884) and the other
may have been Elizabeth Scott.
Enrollment grew rapidly since there were no free public
schools at the time. They had to move to the "Lawn
Hotel" in 1870 and in 1872 to Milford Street to allow
for more space. At this time they changed the name of
the school to Bowling Green Femaile Seminary.
By 1877, there were 7 teachers for 10
students (male & female) enrolled for both the elementary
and high school levels, mostly from local families.
The property consisted of a 4
room school bldg and a dwelling house.
In 1881, the
Reverend Edgar Healey Rowe married Emma Scott, one
of Mrs Chandler's sisters and one of the teachers. He
was an alumnus of the Bowling Green School & a Methodist
minister. He had continued his studies at Randolph Macon
College, University of VA & Princeton University.
In 1883, Mr Rowe bought the school from Mrs. Chandler
& operated it with her as principal. Gradually,
Mrs Chandler retired into the background until 1897
when she bought the Washington Female Seminary in Atlanta
GA & moved there.
In 1889 the school house burned. It was replaced
by a schoolhouse with 8 classrooms. Tuition, board, lodging,
& laundry was $125 per semester.
The same year, Dr &
Mrs Rowe offered the Seminary to the Methodist Episcopal Church,
South. The property had become run down and was encumbered by
$5000 in mortgages. Blackstone College, a 4 yr institution,
had opened in the vicinity and was offering competition. There
was some question as to whether the church would accept the
offer, but finally the grant was consummated. For the next 22
yrs the school was theoretically under the direction of a board
of trustees appointed by the Methodist Conference. However,
the church gave no support and little guidance to the work of
the institution. In 1921, after one of the trustees had made
an unfavorable report concerning the Seminary, Dr Rowe did away
with the board of trustees and since then the school has had
no official connection with the church. "The Lord giveth
and the Lord taketh away!"
Southern Seminary became the incorporated name
of the school in 1900.