Bachman Children Come Home

Wednesday, April 02, 2008 - by Nikki Rigdon

For a few adults in the Tennessee Valley, Bachman Memorial Home for Children is the only home they remember. During the years of 1912 to 1989, children from babies to teenagers were sent to the Home when their families were broken by the tragedy of the death of one or both parents.

“Bachman truly helped me see that you can have a stable home life and make life long friends. And, if you just keep trying and not give up, your unfortunate situations can get better. In one word Bachman gave me hope then and now," said Ruth Brown, resident of Bachman Home from 1968 through 1974. “I think one of the most important [ways Bachman affected my life] was learning about the love for God through the church and most people that I met.”

Ruth, along with more than 70 former residents, their families, and staff of the Bachman Memorial Home for Children, gathered on the Bachman Academy campus in McDonald on Saturday, March 29, to fellowship, reminisce and see the places where they spent their early years. Wet weather did nothing to hamper the festivities as, after lunch, many toured the 200 acre campus to see the dairy barn, where they used to milk the cows and the fields where they helped to grow and harvest the food they ate.

They also wanted to see how the campus has changed over the years with the addition of horses, barns and a lake, added in the 1980’s, for fishing and swimming.

In addition to lunching together and viewing hundreds of photos from the early days, residents toured through the buildings to see their old dorm rooms. Tiny rooms that now house desks, chairs and all the accessories of business used to hold two bunk beds and four boys or girls each. Learning to get along with the other children was another important lesson Ruth learned at Bachman.

“When you are living with at least 60 other ‘brothers and sisters,’” said Ruth, “you have to get along as much as possible.”

Many alumni even asked to see the basement where a woodshop and cannery used to be. They spent many hours there shelling peas, shucking corn, ironing clothes, and playing hide and seek.

Bachman Home, founded by Dr. John Lynn Bachman, began as a one-room school in Farner, Tn., in 1912. As the educational system improved in the area, however, Bachman was no longer needed as a school. It changed focus from educating to providing a home for many orphaned children and broken families and filling a great need in the Tennessee Valley.

In 1950, Bachman Home moved to Cleveland to the site of the former Church of God Home for Children.


University Hosts Award-Winning Author Janisse Ray

Award-winning author, naturalist, and activist Janisse Ray will give a talk on the UTC campus about heirloom seeds, agrodiversity and the future of food. The event is scheduled for Thursday at 7 p.m. in the Raccoon Mountain Room of the UTC University Center. This program is presented by the Tennessee Valley chapter of Wild Ones and UTC Department of Biological and Environmental ... (click for more)

Dalton State Program Gives Non Students Chance To Further Their Education

Lynda Shenefield had an idea for a book.  But she needed help. Shenefield had no idea how to get her book published.  Then she saw a news release about an epublishing course offered at Dalton State, and thought that would be the perfect opportunity to learn what she needed to know.  At 63, Ms. Shenefield didn’t want to go through the process of enrolling as a student ... (click for more)

DA Looking Into Issue Of County Commission Candidate's Campaign Sending Filled-Out Requests For Absentee Ballot To Elderly Voters

The District Attorney's Office has been provided with documents that a County Commission candidate's campaign sent filled-out requests for absentee ballots to elderly voters. Kerry Steelman, election administrator, said there have been four instances in which such requests came from the Elect John Brooks campaign. He said state law says in Section 2-6-202:  (3) A person ... (click for more)

Graham Says County School-City Lawsuit Settlement "Stinks," But County Commission Approves It

The County Commission on Wednesday approved a settlement of a lawsuit brought by the Hamilton County Schools against the city of Chattanooga, though several commissioners said they were not happy with the deal and Commissioner Joe Graham said it "stinks." Commissioner Graham was the lone no vote. He was joined by Commissioner Tim Boyd in a failed effort to defer it a week. ... (click for more)

The Truth From Weston’s Sister - And Response (3)

I try not to read the negative articles and opinions about my older brother. Growing up around politics, I learned a long time ago that thick skin is not only necessary, it’s paramount. But this time, the lies and the rumors and the inaccurate information has gone too far. It’s too ridiculous for me to ignore. So let’s clear a few things up: Weston and I do not “come ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Oscar Brock’s True Passion

I don’t pay much attention to the Hamilton County School Board. Once the moon and the stars aligned behind Superintendent Rick Smith, you hear very little, if anything, from the nine-member council that oversees an annual budget of almost $400 million and employs 4,480 people. So chew this for a minute: approximately 2,000 of those people are not teachers. Yes, there are 78 principals ... (click for more)