|Douglass Schools in Warehouse District. According to the school's Class of 1965 website, Douglass School's origins were a 1891 frame building on the south side of California between Robinson and Harvey known as the "colored school." At least by 1901, the school moved to the location in the 1901 Sanborn Map Company map shown here, east and north of Webster School on California and the school's name was Douglass School, even though mispelled in the map (the name was chosen in honor of the noted civil rights leader Frederick Douglass). For information about the Douglass School on High Avenue which replaced this one in 1932-1934, click here.|
The E. California structure was also a frame building and on September 14, 1903, it was totally destroyed by fire, as shown in the September 15 Daily Oklahoman article below:
The board of education promptly offered a $250 reward for the identity of the person(s) responsible for the fire. I was unable to locate an article which solved the fire matter one way or another.
|At least by 1906, Webster School became the "colored" school. It seems unlikely that occurred with the 1903 fall school term because Webster, then a white school, would have begun its fall term. So far, I've not pinned down the date that Webster became a black school, but by 1906 it was, even though the name remained at that point Webster School, assuming the crop of a 1906 Sanborn Map Company show here is accurate. It may not be since a June 14, 1905, Oklahoman article reported that gun shots were heard being fired near Douglass School, which could at the time only mean the Webster School property.|
The M.K.& T. (Katy) Railroad, with its major passenger and freight terminals located on the south side of Reno south of Douglass, had its eyes on the school property for many years but never got it. See this November 1906 article and this December 1911 article if you're curious about that.
Over time, both the school's location and its adequacy came under close scrutiny. The black population was no longer located south of the Rock Island tracks but was north in the Deep Deuce area and east of that. By 1932, the issues of a new school, long promised, were coming to a head as evidenced by the January 28, 1932, Oklahoman article below. In 1932, the former Lowell School at 600 N. High became the new home of Douglass, and the former Douglass became Wheatly School.
Go To Top
Go To Top Ultimate Deep Deuce Index
Doug Dawgz Home Page Vintage OKC Clickable Map Vintage OKC Clickable Index
E-mail your comments, corrections, suggestions, etc.