This two-story brick structure in Hartsville was built as a public grade school in 1902 on land donated by Major James Lide Coker, founder of Coker College. In 1909 the building became a high school and operated until 1925. At that time a new Hartsville High School was built on West Carolina Avenue, which now houses the Thornwell School of the Arts.
The Hartsville Public School served white students only unit 1970. Black students from Hartsville attended the Darlington County Training School, later known as the Butler School. The former Hartville Publoc School building was used by the Darlington County School District as a warehouse and is now owned by the Darlington County Community Action Agency.
Hartsville Public School is listed in the National Register as part of the East Home Avenue Historic District:
The East Home Avenue Historic District is significant for its association with the residential development of Hartsville from ca. 1850 to ca. 1938; as a reflection of the diverse architectural styles and influences of that period; and for its association with the leading figures of the town’s history. Home Avenue has historically been the major residential street in Hartsville since it was laid out and landscaped in 1890. This district specifically illustrates the residential and commercial/industrial growth of Hartsville for the period ca. 1890 to ca. 1938. The district is a collection of 60 primarily residential properties, 54 of which contribute to the historic character of the district and 6 which are non-contributing. Architectural styles and influences include Colonial Revival, Classical Revival, Craftsman, and Bungalow.