[Front] Johnston's first school opened on this site in 1873. The Male and Female Academy was a boarding school, with Rev. Luther Broaddus as its first principal. Alternately a private and public school during its early history, it was reorganized in 1884 as the Johnston Male and Female Institute. It became Johnston High School when it was sold to the town in 1906. A three-story brick high school was built here in 1910; it was torn down when the school closed in 1961.
[Reverse] Henry Simms Hartzog (1866-1953), superintendent of the Institute 1895-97, left Johnston to become the third president of Clemson College. Dr. John Lake, who succeeded Hartzog as superintendent, was later a Baptist missionary to China. Joseph Earle Jacobs (1893-1971), a graduate of Johnston High School who taught there 1914-15, was a career diplomat in the U.S. Foreign Service 1915-57, most notably as Ambassador to Czechoslovakia (1949) and to Poland (1955-57).