Michigan Registered Historic Site
Woodstock Manual Labor Institute
Prior Foster, an Ohio Negro, began this school "in the woods" in 1844 and four years later it was incorporated. Designed to serve "colored people and others," the Institute taught a full range of subjects and was one of the nation's first integrated schools. The students worked in the fields and orchards to help support the school. Soon eight buildings were on the grounds. More than fifty students were in attendance, using a library of two thousand volumes. A fire in 1855 destroyed the main building, and the school was discontinued during the Civil War. The educational pioneering was continued by Foster's grandson, Dr. Laurence Jones, founder of the well-known Piney Woods School in Mississippi in 1909.
Michigan Historical Commission Registered State Site No. 297
Property of the State of Michigan
Sponsored by the Detroit Voice of Piney Woods School