Following formation and touchdown just  north of Demopolis, the tornado was on track for Greensboro, which is 37 miles southwest of Brent.

There in Greensboro, it had been an eventful evening at Southern Academy with the school’s Baccalaureate Service scheduled for that Sunday evening.The Academy formed in 1965 and was located in the renovated old Southern University building. The building was constructed in 1856 under auspices of the Methodist Church and housed Southern University until 1916.

Minutes after the Service had ended at Southern Academy, the tornado struck, destroying the 117 year old building.

The tornado caused one death and injured 52 in the Greensboro area.

Continuing to the northeast, as if following Highway 25, the storm would soon earn its name. A half hour later, on Main Street in Brent, the tornado’s already violent F4 winds would ramp up to, and possibly beyond,  the threshold of F5 strength

Photos below of Southern University/Southern Academy are from the Library of Congress, Historic American Buildings Survey. They are from 1935-1936.

Southern U 1935

Southern U Front Door 1936

Southern University Auditorium 1935.

Southern U Stairs 1936

Southern U Stairs 2 1935

One Response to “Southern University/Southern Academy, Greensboro”

  1. John B. said

    From Andrew Taylor:

    Baccalaureate services had ended 12 minutes before the tornado came through Greensboro and destroyed the old Southern University which housed Southern Academy at the time. The devastation was horrible.

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