Sallie Ellis Davis House
Welcome, educators and students, to the Sallie Ellis Davis’s House Educational Resources page! Our staff has designed a set of lesson plans and other educational resources based on the Social Studies Georgia Standards of Excellence. A strong focus is placed on utilizing primary documents. Images and/or transcripts of these documents are included so they can be either viewed online or downloaded and printed. Through examining these documents, students will gain firsthand knowledge of what life was for African Americans from the late 19th century into the early 20th century and develop valuable critical thinking and research skills that reinforce classroom instruction. If you're interested in bringing more primary source documents and hands-on objects into your classroom from the Sallie Ellis Davis House, check out our traveling lesson plan!
The Sallie Ellis Davis House was the home of a dedicated and passionate Baldwin County educator. Sallie was born to Elizabeth Brunswick, a former enslaved woman, and Josh Ellis, a white planter/merchant/loan officer/war veteran in 1877. As a child,Sallie was enrolled in the Eddy School, which was the school for African Americans in the community at the time. She graduated from Normal School at Atlanta University (now Clark Atlanta, an HBCU) in 1894. She moved back to Milledgeville to teach Math at the Eddy school, but went back to Atlanta from 1895-1899 to earn her Bachelor’s and Master's degree. Because of these qualifications, Sallie was one of the most credentialed teachers, white or black, male or female, in Baldwin County.
She worked her entire career as a teacher and principal at the Eddy School and believed that through a combination of hard work and education one could accomplish anything. Sallie Ellis Davis was an inspiration and a pillar of the African American community in segregated Milledgeville. Her legacy, preserved in her home, is one of excellence. She encouraged her students to excel in all they did and to “reach for the stars” no matter what obstacles lay before them. Since April 2012 her home is available for historic tours that celebrate the life and times of Sallie Ellis Davis.
Take a Class Tour!
A docent trained in working with groups of children will guide you and your students through the house. Our docents are highly knowledgeable about the Sallie Ellis Davis, her involvement in the community, and the restoration of the house. Additionally, students are encouraged to play active roles in the tour through questioning and dialog.
To arrange your school tour, please visit our Tour Page.
Rent Our Traveling Lesson Plan
Before Desegregation: From Civil War to Civil Rights, 1865 - 1954.
The Sallie Ellis Davis House “Before Desegregation: From Civil War to Civil Rights, 1865 - 1954” Traveling Lesson Plan case provides your students with insights into what life was like for African Americans in the United States from the late 19th century into the first half of the 20th century, with a focus on four specific lessons plans. These lesson plans include topics such as Plessy vs. Ferguson, Jim Crow laws, Hate Groups and the Ku Klux Klan, and Brown vs. Board of Education. Our hope is that it will enrich, not only your teaching approach to this period, but your student’s understanding of the hardships and realities of life for African Americans in the United States after the abolishment of slavery.
Please review our Rules and Regulations for the Traveling Lesson Plan.
The following lesson plans should be used at the educator's professional discretion according to the needs and capabilities of each individual class. These lesson plans are useful before or after a visit and need not be completed in any particular order.
The documents that are presented for your use in the classroom have suggested lesson plans that can be modified to suit the ability and interest level of your students. Each lesson has been coordinated with the Georgia Standards of Excellence (GSE) for Social Studies that begin in the 2017-2018 school year. We primarily focused on 5th and 8th grades and US History since those standards align closest to our house museum. Feel free to adapt lessons to fit your students' needs and grade level as necessary. More lessons will be added as they are created.
- This lesson explores the pivotal Plessy v. Ferguson case that enacted the “separate, but equal” doctrine, which became the legal justification for segregation in the United States.
- Jim Crow laws were any state or local laws that enforced or legalized racial segregation. This lesson explores the origin of Jim Crow laws, how they affected the lives of millions for decades, and their final removal.
A “hate group” is an organized group or movement that advocates hate, hostility, and violence towards an entire class of people. The Ku Klux Klan is one of the most popular, but by no means the only, hate group to threaten African American liberties and safety. This lesson explores the actions and nature of the Klan, and their eventual rise and fall over three peak time periods.
This lesson explores the history and impact of the Brown v. Board of Education court decision, which ruled that racial segregation in schools was unconstitutional and led to the desegregation of many public places.
*The lesson plans themselves are the property of Sallie Ellis Davis House in Milledgeville, Ga. and may be freely used for non-profit educational purposes only.
Exhibit Research and Information
Missed the exhibits while they were on display? No worries! You can find all the panels, research information, and images from some of our past exhibits right here.
The Unheard African American Story: An Exhibition Series
- Stolen Rights: A History of Voter Suppression in the Nation
- Complicated Colonization: A History of African American Removal from the U.S.
- Health Hazard: Racism in U.S. Medicine
- Legacy of Hate: Jim Crow from Minstrel to Law
- American Hypocrisy: The Great Migration and Racism
A Tale of Two Schools: An Exhibition Series
Explore the legacy of Sallie Ellis Davis and the history of her house in this coloring and activity book for young learners.
Take this self-guided walking tour of the historic African American area of Milledgeville and learn all about influential African Americans and the history of the Eddy Neighborhood where The Sallie Ellis Davis House is located.