Prince-Carr Elementary School, US Highway 52, Cash: 1970s (2019/10/18)

For years, I remember driving by this old school in Cash wondering what it was and why it wasn't used anymore. According to the SC Picture Project website, the Prince-Carr Elementary School in Cash was built in the 1950s to provide a segregated elementary school for African-American children that was more on par in terms of quality with Caucasian elementary schools in the area. The school was likely closed in the 1970s when the federal government began cracking down on states that had yet to integrate all children into the same schools. I suppose it might have been used for a little while longer as an integrated school, but I do not recall seeing this school used while I was in public school, which was the late 1980s through the 1990s. It might have still been used at that time by Chesterfield County for some other purpose. Either way, I'm fairly certain it was no longer used as a public school by the 1980s.

The layout of Prince-Carr Elementary School is reminiscent of how the old Long Junior High School in Cheraw was built. That observation should come as no surprise because Long Junior High School was originally the segregated high school for African-American kids. Upon closer inspection however, Prince-Carr looks more similar to how Cheraw Primary School used to look up until the early 1990s. Both had classrooms with doors that were accessible to the outside, as opposed to the traditional indoor hallway, and the door of one classroom would face the door of the adjacent classroom only a few feet away.

Time, of course, has not been kind to Prince-Carr, which is overgrown with vegetation and appears to have been vandalized numerous times over the years. The buildings look to be in no condition to be used again without extensive repairs. I suppose the only reason the buildings still stand is because the county found it cheaper over the years to just leave them be as opposed to having to tear them down. Now it seems that Chesterfield County no longer owns this property, for according to this GIS website, the property was purchased for $28,000 in 2014 by Majeed and Farah Sanori of Springfield, Virginia. In five years of their ownership, the school buildings remain. Why buy the land and do nothing with it?

Because of the dilapidated state of the buildings, I never took more than a couple of steps inside them while taking pictures, although my curiosity kept prodding me to do so. The room with the small stage was likely the lunch room and auditorium, and the room next to it with the green ceiling appears to have been the kitchen. Although the busted television is old enough to have been used at Prince-Carr while it was still a school, it is also just as likely that someone simply took it out of his house sometime ago and dumped it off there.

The entire time I was there, I couldn't shake this feeling of unease. It could have been the dilapidation of the buildings. It could have been the constant squeaking noise that probably belonged to a rat or bat that I kept hearing in the lunch room. It might have been some of the graffiti I, not the picture I posted here with the funny grammatical error (in an old school building, of all places!). You know what? It was likely something I ate that day.

B.C. Moore's / Peebles / Goody's, 140 Market Street: September 2018 (2019/10/11)

While I was downtown taking pictures of the buildings that will be demolished for the new hotel, I decided to take pictures of the building that was last a Goody's department store. Goody's moved into this location in May of 2011. In fact, there was a ribbon-cutting ceremony (page 4B, paywalled) for the Goody's grand opening.

In my online searches, I have been unable to track down a definitive closing date for this Goody's. There are reviews online that go back to "one year ago", and I remember the store being out of business by the time I moved back to Cheraw near the end of 2018; therefore, this store was still in business at some point earlier in 2018. I have placed the closing date as September of 2018 because I know that downtown was impacted by significant flooding from Hurricane Florence, and it is likely that this store was damaged as a result, especially due to the fact that the floor of the store is below street-level. That may also explain the musty smell I noticed while I was standing at the doors to take the pictures of the inside of the store. If Goody's was still in business during the flooding, then I can easily see their parent company finding it cheaper to pull out of Cheraw rather than fix the damage and replace lost merchandise.

Though I had never been to this Goody's, I remember going to one in either Florence or Rockingham as a kid because my mom liked to go there. I don't remember it being any different from a Belk or J.C. Penney store. They were all similarly places I did not want to be as a kid because clothes shopping was boring...and it still is boring. That said, I don't imagine that Peebles was any different either, which was at this location before Goody's.

Peebles set up shop in Cheraw in 2006 when its parent company, Stage Stores, bought out B. C. Moore and Sons as seen here. I do remember going to Moore's as a kid with my mom, and I specifically remember getting or at least trying on shoes at Moore's on several occasions. We typically used the back entrance by the old Duvall's Hardware store, which is currently the Habitat for Humanity ReStore, I guess because there were more parking spots. In fact, we used that entrance enough times that when I would come in the front entrance, I would initially feel slightly disoriented. I think the last time I walked into Moore's was to find a suit for prom. Don't ask me how many years ago that has been.

Warehouse, 1 Village Park Drive: September 2019 (2019/10/06)

This post is the last of a series on several buildings in downtown Cheraw that will be demolished to make way for a new hotel in Cheraw. According to this article in The Link (top right, paywalled), the addition of a Marriott-branded Springhill Suites is part of a plan to revitalize the downtown area. Currently, Cheraw already has four hotels: Quality Inn, Inn Cheraw, Palmetto Inn, and most recently Baymont by Wyndham. Hopefully, the plan to build this Springhill Suites is more of a sign of an influx of business to come to Cheraw than a gamble.

At the moment, this warehouse is used by the Cheraw Habitat for Humanity ReStore, which shares the same 1 Village Park address. It may have been previously used by either the old Moore's or Duvall's (Cheraw) Hardware stores. I have heard that the town is working with Habitat for Humanity to move this ReStore to the old BI-LO building at the corner of Highway 9 and Jersey Street, and of course, if that comes to fruition, then that will be a future post.

The building interestingly only has one entrance and exit, which is the loading bay door in the front. In the back, you can see a single doorway and another loading bay that were sealed off at some point(s) in the past. I can't decide if the chimney was for heating the building years ago or for an incinerator. I imagine that the UPS and FedEx drop-off boxes will remain at this location, though they may be temporarily moved for the impending demolition and subsequent new construction.