If buildings could talk the Melrose Clubhouse would have a lot of stories to share! The locally designated landmark is tucked away in the midst of the Melrose Elementary school campus and is owned by the School Board. For decades after its 1942 dedication, the clubhouse served as an important civic and recreational center for African American citizens during a period of stark segregation in St. Petersburg.
The School Board has plans to renovate the Melrose campus and the future of the landmark building remains an open question. PTB is working with other community groups to find the best solution that will allow for continued public use of the building and to urge the School Board to keep the building as part of our community’s heritage. With the help of Senator Darryl Rouson, a special grant fund for African American historic and cultural buildings was included in the State’s 2021-2022 budget. This grant fund could be a source of funding for renovating the Melrose Clubhouse.