It is the first thing past Oakwood Cemetery, sitting on a hill so high it looks down on the cemetery. The home was established in 1917 by the Federation of Women’s Clubs, but for its first 40-odd years it was known as the Children’s Protective Home. The Home’s current quarters on the UWR was built in 1928. The facility is able to provide a caring home for up to 36 boys and girls who have been orphaned, abandoned or abused. Ken Upchurch Sr, founder of Upchurch Construction, who built his dream house on Woodley Road, was so impressed with Brantwood that he served as President of its Board for 20 years, and his portrait hangs in the lobby.
I went to school with many of the kids from there. As a kid I was jealous that they got to live in a big old house and always have their friends around to play. The original home on this site was that of Laura Jenkins Stern ( I think the same family as the Jenkins Brick family). Her husband was Sigmund Stern and her only child was Lawrence Seigfried Stern who left Montgomery after WWI to have a journalism career in the northeast. The original Stern family home was called Fern Hill. Once Mrs. Stern was widowed she became the juvenile court probation officer for white children. She was a suffragette and a local pioneer in the area of social work. Due to her interest in child welfare, she made her home available to become the first Children’s Home in August of 1918. Initially the home was leased from her.I believe there are pictures of it on the Times Gone By page. Mrs Stern is an unsung hero in my opinion in the history of child welfare in Montgomery. From what I can tell in reviewing the Montgomery Advertiser archives she was quite effective and a diligent and caring public servant..