A Rich History
For over a century, Fletcher has been building it's history. Many lives have been changed on these grounds through the dedication of godly men and women who were sold out to Christ and His ministry to the youth. We encourage you to read the book "A Fletcher History" for a thorough account of this institutions rich history.
The Fletcher Story
The original property has a history dating back to the days of Presidents Washington and Jefferson. While in the area gathering materials for his book, Men of the Mountains, Professor Arthur Spaulding discovered a rundown plantation consisting of 450 acres at a purchase price of $6,000. Mrs. Martha Rumbough, a lady of some means and prominence living in Asheville, provided the money for the purchase of the property. “After the school farm was purchased, class work began with two pupils in March 1910. Professors Arthur Spaulding and Sydney Brownsberger (President of the first Seventh - day Adventist College) began the work at that time.” (From Minutes)
Some of the other pioneer leaders in the enterprise were Dr. and Mrs. F. E. Bliss, Lelia Patterson, Mr. and Mrs. James Lewis, Mr. and Mrs. A. A. Jasperson, and Mr. and Mrs. C. G. Marquis. In addition to the school, the institution for many years operated treatment rooms and the Health Cafeteria, the first cafeteria in Asheville. The health work began in a formal way with the building of a “cottage for sanitarium purposes” (from Minutes) in 1915. This was the forerunner of Mountain Sanitarium and Hospital. The hospital facility is now being used as a nursing home.
A prized possession, a school calendar printed for the year 1913-1914, stated that the original school included elementary and high school work - both primarily intended to serve the needs of the workers and children of the community. The education work grew slowly and attendance remained small. There was a change in the mid-twenties with the appointment of Mrs. Marguerite M. Jasperson as principal. Even then the school remained at the tenth grade level until the early 1930’s. In 1931 the eleventh grade was added and a year later the twelfth grade. In 1932 the school was accredited by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. It is evident that the foundation and program of the institution grew out of the sacrifice and devotion of those who pioneered. There are abundant reasons for believing that, should this same spirit of sacrifice and devotion be lost, the purpose and the objectives of the institution would, in the same measure, be lost.