Garland Redd Quarles - Superintendent | Handley 100th Notable
Garland Redd Quarles – Superintendent

Garland Quarles graduated from Randolph-Macon College in June 1923 with a degree in English and a Phi Beta Kappa key. He accepted his first full time position teaching English at the Handley High School that was scheduled to open in September of that year.

Mr. Quarles walked with the boys in his homeroom from the temporary classroom buildings at the corner of Braddock Street and Gerrard Street to Room 24 in the nearly empty Handley building. He left Handley 42 years later as Winchester’s longest serving principal and school superintendent.

Mr. Quarles earned his Master’s degree in English at the University of Virginia in 1927. He was appointed Principal at Handley in 1928 and Superintendent of Winchester Public Schools in 1930. He retired from both positions in 1965.

Michael Foreman described him as a master teacher, historian, author, orator, model citizen and leader of the community. He became an active member of the Kiwanis Club in 1928. He helped to organize Winchester’s Bi-Centennial Committee in 1949. He was a member of the War Memorial Association and the Winchester Civil War Roundtable.

He was a charter member of the Winchester-Frederick County Historical Society and edited the Society’s first publication in 1931. He served on the Board of Directors of the Society until 1965 when he became Director Emeritus.

Garland Quarles published nine books and two articles on local history.  Most of the books were published with assistance from the Farmers and Merchants National Bank and were reprinted by the Historical Society.

The largest body of his written works was the Shenandoah Apple Blossom Festival pageants. He authored and often narrated the pageants that were performed by students on the steps at Handley from 1930 until 1959. He considered his best to be “The Harvest of the Years” written for Winchester’s Bi-Centennial in 1952.

His Alma Mater, Randolph-Macon College, presented him with an honorary Doctorate of Laws in 1952 in recognition of his mastery of correct English, serving as Superintendent of schools, and authoring the pageants of the “famed Winchester Apple Blossom Festivals”.

The Jaycees recognized him as “Man of the Year” in 1951 and the Chamber of Commerce named him “Outstanding Citizen of the Community” in 1958. The newly organized Judges Athletic Association also gave him an award for his service in 1958. The Winchester School Board named the city’s fifth elementary school for him in 1955.

One of his last projects was the narration of a video tour of Mount Hebron Cemetery done in the early 1980’s. The video not only allowed him to tell the stories of local people but also allowed his unique story telling abilities to be recorded.

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