Year Erected: 1958
Marker Text: The Baptist Bethel Association, meeting in Benevolence in 1851, resolved to undertake “The Creation of an Educational Institution for Females,” to be called “THE BAPTIST FEMALE COLLEGE OF SOUTH-WESTERN GEORGIA”. This site, in the little village of Villa Nova, was chosen for its location. Rev. Thos. Muse served two years as Agent, raising funds, promoting plans, shaping policies. A handsome colonnaded building was erected here and A. T. Holmes made first President. School opened in the Fall of 1852. The first Trustees were Jesse H. Campbell, James Clark, Francis Seig, William Janes, Ebenezer Warren, Roger Dickinson, John Wilson, William Wade, Joel Perry, Thomas Muse, William L. Crawford, Richard Thornton, John Fletcher, David Vason, Jesse Stallings. Closed by war, 1863, it served as the Hill Hospital of the Confederacy (1864-65). In 1880s as a branch of Georgia’s University system, it became the Bethel Agricultural and Military College. Destroyed by fire in 1901, this property was sold, another site bought and a new building erected. In 1907, Bethel Association sold that second property to the City of Cuthbert for operation of Cuthbert’s first Public School.