Monday, 3 January 2011

Montgomery Bell Academy

Montgomery Bell Academy is a preparatory day school for boys in grades 7 to 12 in Nashville.  It was established in 1867 in the aftermath of the American Civil War and is named after Montgomery Bell, a Scotch-Irish industrialist who made his fortune in the early 19th century as the 'ironmaster' of Middle Tennessee.  When he died in 1855 he left $20,000 for the establishment of a boys school in Nashville and this was invested by Dempsey Weaver of the Planters Bank.  By 1867 the investment had grown to $46,000 and it was used to establish Montgomery Bell Academy as a preparatory department of the University of Nashville.

In 1875 the University of Nashville's operations were split into three separate entities, one of which was Montgomery Bell Academy, and in 1881 the trustees moved MBA to a six-acre tract east of the old site.  Down through the years the school has encountered many difficulties but in 1911 circumstances began to improve and since then it has prospered.

In 1956 the board of trustees decided to embark on a rebuilding programme and this included the Bownlee O Currey Gymnasium.  This was named in honour of the head of the MBA board of trustees from 1943 to 1952 and another Nashville citizen with Ulster-Scots ancestry.   The first of the Currey family had emigrated from Ulster to America in the 18th century.

Montgomery Bell Academy has extensive exchange links with other boys' schools throughout the English-speaking world including Eton College and Winchester College in England.

No comments:

Post a Comment