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Gwinnett County Public Schools

Dacula Middle School

Fast Facts


The first settlement in the area was called Chinquapin Grove. Train tracks were laid approximately six miles east of Lawrenceville in 1891 for the Seaboard Railroad, and the contractors selected the settlement as their temporary camp. In its earliest days, the area was known as Hoke. A post office was established in this name to honor a railroad official, but the railroad refused to have the town continue under that name. The townspeople called the town Freeman Town after a prominent family in the area. The family owned a mill which as of 1996, mill was the only working grist mill remaining in Gwinnett County. John W. Freeman, the first postmaster, suggested the name “Dacula” as a combination of “Decatur” and “Atlanta.” The name of the settlement was changed to Dacula.

Mr. J. W. Hamilton, born in Gwinnett County on November 7, 1847, was Dacula’s first settler. He built his small wooden house in 1891 and Dacula grew around it.

In 1905, Dacula was incorporated, with Dr. S.L. Hinton as its first mayor. He also was the owner of the first drug store. Other Dacula mayors included the following: A.M. Wilson, L.C. Mauldin, Beverly Ambrose, G.F. Pharr, K.E. Taylor, Claude Hinton, Otho Pharr, J.W. Hamilton, and Taylor Whitley.

The city boomed in the years between 1910 and 1935, largely due to the cotton trade. A large cotton gin was located in Dacula where many people came to buy, sell, and process their cotton. In 1935, a city hall was erected at a cost of $2,500.

Schools in Dacula
In 1892, a small two-story wooden building was built on the current site of the Dacula Middle School campus. Another school building was built in 1910 that was the pride of school officials in the area for years. However, that building burned in 1944. After the fire, classes were held in the vocational building, in the canning plant, in the lunchroom, in the garage, and in local stores.

The next school building opened in 1947. This building still exists at the center of the Dacula Middle School campus. This building housed students in kindergarten through 12th grade until 1974 when Dacula High School was built. The campus housed students up to 8th grade with only one administrator until 1979.

In 1979, Dacula Middle became a separate entity led by principal Mike Moody. The 250 middle school students were housed in the rear wing of this building away from the elementary students housed in the other portion of the building.

In 1988, the current media center was built. Dacula Elementary School moved to its current location in 1989. At this time, students were rezoned to Dacula Middle from the Collins Hill and North Gwinnett clusters, raising the school population to 520. Construction of the two-story buildings located in the front and back of the original school building, as well as the construction of an additional gymnasium, were completed in 1995.

The area moved into a rapid growth period between 1997 and 2006. Nearly 3,000 students were enrolled in 2003, and the school expanded its area to include 104 trailers. “Falcon Village” housed nearly 1,500 students. That same year, the school was awarded the state “Georgia School of Excellence Award” which recognized the high academic achievement of Dacula students. The Mill Creek Cluster opened the following year and that new cluster’s middle school, Osborne Middle School, offered tremendous relief for Dacula Middle. As a result, most trailers on the Dacula Middle campus were removed. In December 2004, a new four-story addition opened, bringing all Dacula Middle students under one roof for the first time in eight years.

The Dacula Community and Dacula Middle School have a proud history. The school, with the support of Dacula families, has risen to the challenge of growth and maintained its focus on students and their education... a focus that flourishes today.