Thomas U. Faucette was pastor of Oxford Presbyterian Church from 1850 to 1866. Both he and his wife, Emma, were teachers. In September of 1891 they opened their Home Institute for Young Ladies on McClanahan Street. Later they bought a lot on College Street in Oxford, NC and erected this commodious frame building which they used as both a residence and a schoolhouse. The house on McClanahan became a Community Center.
By January of 1892, the Faucette's were advertising their Female Seminary in the local newspaper, "The Day". Thomas Faucette died in 1895, and by 1900 his school was being run as an elementary day school.
Time Brings Changes in School System
The Oxford Graded School opened its doors with about 200 pupils, occupying the old Faucette House. This one school, supported by tax money, would have nine grades and an eight-month term. The superintendent, Harry P. Harding, supervised seven women teachers, and the janitor, Lazarus. The teachers got $25 a month, better than the two or three dollars a month per pupil made teaching music or private school, if and when they collected it.
1909 Sanborn Map showing old Faucette House / School
Oxford Graded School by 1901; 5th from left on botom row
This school continued for the next 10 years in the same location. Around 1910, the old frame structure was removed and a new brick building constructed (for $20,000) to house the Oxford Public School. This new building housed ten grades with six classrooms, the library and offices for the Superintendent and Principal on the first floor, and four classrooms and a large auditorium on the second floor. Opening in 1911 with over 300 students, this building was adequate for only a few years.
By 1917, the higher grades were moved to another house. A new high school building on Williamsboro Street had been completed by 1921 and was occupied by growing numbers of students in the area.
C. G. Credle School
Beginning as The Oxford Graded School, the name eventually became simply The Graded School, then The College Street School, before being named for Mr. C. G. Credle in 1953. Credle served as superintendent of the Oxford Schools from 1920 until his retirement in 1951. During Mr. Credle's administration, a new high school building; two gyms, a shop and a Home Economics Cottage built as part of the Oxford School system. Several additions were also added to the Credle School property through the years, expanding the complex to include 3 classroom buildings (1910, 1952, and 2000) and a gym (1934).
Credle School building is the oldest structure still operating as a school in the state of North Carolina.