Lindley Junior High School Collection

ca. 1900-1978 [bulk 1949-1978]. 15 folders (26 items).MSS. COLL. #29


The J. Van Lindley Jr. High School Collection consists of items relating to that public school and the Greensboro school system more broadly. Lindley Jr. High was part of the City of Greensboro school system and closed in 1979. This small collection contains photographs, yearbooks, teachers’ materials, books, and other items.

Arrangement: This collection is organized into two series by document type. The series are: Images, ca. 1900-1950s, and Printed Materials, 1916-1978.

Provenance: The bulk of this collection was donated by Dr. Bonnie Baur and assigned the accession numbers 1983.71.1-19. Additional items were donated by Paul Sowders in 2022 and assigned the accession numbers 2022.27.1-7.

Processing: This collection was originally processed by John M. Beam III, and the finding aid was completed in July 1984. The collection was reorganized, the additional items were incorporated, and the finding aid was updated by Archivist Elise Allison in January 2023.


The J. Van Lindley Jr. High School building was erected in 1918 as Pomona High School and was part of the Guilford County school system. Following a fire in 1929, the school was brought into the City of Greensboro system, repaired, and renamed J. Van Lindley Jr. High School. The school closed in 1979 due to consolidation, declining enrollment, and the resurgence of the middle school concept in public education.

The school was named in honor of John Van Lindley (1838-1918), an accomplished horticulturalist who founded Pomona Nurseries (later J. Van Lindley Nursery Co.). He also launched Pomona Cotton Mill, Pomona Terra Cotta Company, and Security Life and Annuity Company (later part of Jefferson Standard Life Insurance Company). Lindley was very civic-minded and pushed for establishment of the Central Carolina Fair, as well as serving as president of the Guilford County Road Association. His role in strengthening Greensboro’s economy probably helped mitigate any resentment over his service as a Union cavalry man during the Civil War, and the school was named in his honor in 1929.


This collection consists of images and printed materials. Three photographs feature the school band in the 1950s, and a newspaper photo shows damage done by a fire in 1950. Among the printed materials are Lindley Junior High yearbooks covering the years 1958-1959, 1969-1970 and 1972-1978, as well as a graduation program and teachers’ bulletins dating to around 1950. Also included are an engraving of John Van Lindley, for whom the school was named, and a book chapter about him by George Grimsley.


1. Images.  3 folders (5 items).  ca. 1900-1950s.

Included in this series are three photographs of the Lindley Jr. High marching band and an image of the school after a fire. Also of interest is an engraving of John Van Lindley by E.C. Williams and Brothers of New York.

2. Printed Materials.  12 folders (21 items).  1916-1978.

This series contains the following Lindley Jr. High yearbooks: 1958, 1959, 1969-1975, and 1978. Other material consists of the school honor code, a graduation program, a list of members of the Parent-Teacher Association, and two teachers’ bulletins. A copy of a chapter from an unidentified book provides biographical information about the school’s namesake, John Van Lindley.

Items that do not relate specifically to Lindley Jr. High include two teachers’ handbooks and a directory for the Greensboro school system. The series also contains two books: A Heap o’ Livin’, a poetry collection by Edgar A. Guest (Chicago: Reilly & Lee Co., 1916) and New Universal Self-Pronouncing Dictionary, an English dictionary edited by W.J. Pelo (Philadelphia: The John C. Winston Company, 1938).


11Images-- Band (1950s)
2-- Fire damage (ca. 1950)
3-- Lindley, John Van (engraving, ca. 1900)
21Printed Materials-- Books (1916, 1938)
2-- Directory (Greensboro City Schools, 1949-1950)
3-- Graduation (June 1, 1951)
4-- Honor code (n.d.)
5Printed Materials-- Lindley, John Van (biography)
6-- Parent-Teacher Association (1949-1950)
7-- Teachers' bulletins (1949-1951)
8-- Teachers' handbooks (Greensboro Public Schools, 1949-1951)
9Printed Materials-- Yearbook (1958)
10-- Yearbook (1959)
11-- Yearbooks (1969-1975)
12-- Yearbook (1978)