Douglass High School (Memphis, Tennessee)

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Douglass High School
Established 1940, closed 1981
reopened 2008
Type Public
Principal Janet Ware-Thompson[1]
Location Memphis, Tenn., USA
Colors Maroon, Red and White
Website

www.mcsk12.net/schools/douglass.hs

Douglass High School
Douglass High School (Memphis, Tennessee) is located in Tennessee
Douglass High School (Memphis, Tennessee)
Location 3200 Mount Olive Rd
Memphis, Tennessee
Coordinates 35°10′32″N 89°57′6″W / 35.17556°N 89.95167°W / 35.17556; -89.95167Coordinates: 35°10′32″N 89°57′6″W / 35.17556°N 89.95167°W / 35.17556; -89.95167
NRHP Reference # 98000241[2]
Added to NRHP 1998[2]

Douglass High School is a public high school in Memphis, USA, Tennessee, operated by the Memphis City Schools. Located in the African American Douglass neighborhood in North Memphis, it is named for Frederick Douglass, a 19th-century abolitionist.[3]

The original Douglass High School was built in 1938.[citation needed] It burned to the ground and was replaced by a new building in 1946.

The school opened in 1946 and operated in the original Frederick Douglass High School building until 1981 when it closed. Closure occurred after cross-town busing for desegregation caused enrollment to plummet as African American students were bused out of the neighborhood, but few white students reciprocated by attending Douglass.[3] Subsequently the school district used the building for storage, and it fell into a state of disrepair.[4] The building was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1998,[2] but was torn down in 2006 to be replaced by a new building.[3][4]

The current building was started in 2006 and the new Douglass High School opened to students in fall 2008.[4] The new Douglass School opened for the 2008-09 school year, with expected enrollment of at least 800 students. It is one of the oldest but newest Memphis City Schools, with a state-of-the-art 1,500-seat varsity gym, a 1,100-seat auditorium, football stadium (with a track) in the middle of Douglass Park, and baseball stadium at the northeast corner of Douglass Park. The school also has a garden that is named after former first lady Eleanor Roosevelt. The garden sits across the street from the school and is student built. The mascot is the Red Devil and colors are maroon, red and white. The school is expected to house the regular varsity sports and are expected to do well due to the amazing athletes from the community. The sports teams will consist of players from Craigmont who are from the community, the varsity basketball team will have two players from Bolton High School as well.

Douglass High School has an active alumni association with more than 500 members in seven chapters across the United States. The association raises funds for scholarships and other purposes, and its member alumni lobbied public officials to reopen the school.[3] A parade was held to commemorate the demolition of the building. Alumni of the school each took a brick from the rubble to cherish their years at Douglass.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Douglas High School, Principal's message". Memphis City Schools. Retrieved 2011-11-27. 
  2. ^ a b c "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2010-07-09. 
  3. ^ a b c d Jane Roberts, Douglass community prepares to usher in a new era with high school grand opening, Memphis Commercial Appeal, November 20, 2008
  4. ^ a b c Michael Sheffield, Defunct Douglass High School to reopen as optional program, Memphis Business Journal, July 25, 2008

External links[edit]