Pearlie Craft Dove


Photograph, Portrait of Pearlie Craft Dove, 1967

Dr. Pearlie Craft Dove grew up in the Washington Park community; she lived near Ellis Street and graduated from Booker T. Washington High School in 1937. After receiving her undergraduate degree from Clark College, her master's degree from Atlanta University, and doctorate from University of Colorado Boulder, she returned to teach at Clark College from 1949 to 1987. She received many awards for her teaching and continued to play a role in the college after her retirement. She helped to merge Clark College and Atlanta University into one institution, Clark Atlanta University, in 1988.   

Outside of the university community, she also played an important role in many Washington Park and Westside community service groups. Arguably, her most important role was serving as the Cluster Coordinator for the Atlanta Project, a past initiative of President Jimmy Carter, from 1993 to 1998. The goal of the Atlanta Project was to address issues faced by disadvantaged families around the city by giving communities, and the talent living in these communities, the tools and resources needed to tackle  social issues, such as prenatal health care, substandard housing, and juvenile delinquency. Some projects completed by Dove under this program included an adult literacy program, an adolescent health station, and the publication of A Gold Mine on the Westside, a photographic documentary of the community. 

gold mine westside - adjusted.jpg

Pamphlet, "A Gold Mine of Art on the Westside: Resources in the Booker T. Washington Cluster," Rupert Rukuumba Nedd, June 10, 1995

Washington Park Historic District Archive, Hargrett Library

Dove became one of many people working towards the preservation of the Washington Park neighborhood. In 1958, she became the Chair of the Social Action Committee of the Washington Park Community Club and a member of the Washington Park Historic Committee in 1992. She served as a project manager for the 2015 Washington Park Neighboorhood Visioning Plan. In addition, she also helped Washington Park become added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2000.