The Carlen House and Murphy High School's history go hand in hand. The Carlen House was originally home to the Carlen family who owned and operated a farm that occupied the land where Murphy High School currently stands. The house traces its history back to the 1860's. After serving as a family farm house, city museum and most recently an art studio for Murphy High School students, the house is currently vacant and is need of major renovation.
Beginning in October 2007, the Murphy Alumni Association began negotiating with Mobile County Public Schools for a long-term lease of the Carlen House.
On July 18, 2008 the Murphy Alumni Association Executive Board unanimously approved a 10-year lease with two 5-year options between the Murphy Alumni Association (Lessee) and Mobile County Public Schools (Lessor). The lease will allow the Alumni Association to occupy the structure and begin necessary repairs and renovations to the building.
Pending approval of the lease from Mobile County Public Schools the Murphy Alumni Association will begin raising money and applying for grants to fully restore the Carlen House and construct an addition on the rear of the structure to provide for a kitchen and ADA accessible bathrooms.
Once renovations and restoration of the house are completed, the Murphy Alumni Association plans to locate its offices and board meeting room upstairs while maintaining the first floor as a museum, reception area, and archives for Murphy High School.
We will keep you updated both online and in our upcoming newsletters as to the Carlen House progress.