John Newton McEachern, co-founder of the Life of Georgia Insurance Company, displayed an early interest in the education of young people. Mr. McEachern's financial support and his donation of 240 acres of land enabled the establishment of a new school in the Macland community.
His endeavors inspired further donations for the school from civic-minded citizens. From these efforts an ambitious building project began. As a result of the work and dedication of Mr. McEachern and the community, the Seventh District Agricultural and Mechanical School opened in February 1908.
Constructed in 1908, the first structure was a large two-story academic building with large white columns, a building that remained in use until it was razed in 1969.