“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Austin in Travis County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)

Desegregation of Texas Public Schools

Desegregation of Texas Public Schools Marker image. Click for full size.
By Keith Peterson, May 31, 2011
1. Desegregation of Texas Public Schools Marker

The State of Texas instituted a public school system for African-American students during Reconstruction. This segregation of students was further established through the 1896 United States Supreme Court decision in Plessy v. Ferguson, which established the legality of the doctrine, “separate but equal.” Desegregation of schools began after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka in 1954 that segregated schools were unconstitutional. By 1957, more than 100 Texas school districts had made progress toward desegregation. Throughout the proceeding decades, school districts integrated; in some cases, the Supreme Court provided desegregation plans. While many schools desegregated without incident, others experienced a difficult transition.

The method of desegregation varied from district to district. Some integrated one grade per year; others gave students “freedom of choice,” allowing them to select which high school they would attend. In the end, the movement led to the closing of most African-American schools across the state, including L.C. Anderson High School, a noted institution
Desegregation of Texas Public Schools Marker image. Click for full size.
By Keith Peterson, May 31, 2011
2. Desegregation of Texas Public Schools Marker
in Austin. Many of the former school buildings were demolished or left idle, while some were used for various community or educational programs, like Head Start. The closure of these schools affected many residents, since the institutions were often centers of pride for African-American communities. Many of the students from the schools became leaders in their communities, and on state and national levels.

Integration was a slow and often difficult process in Texas, as well as throughout the rest of the United States. Today, desegregation is remembered in Texas as a pivotal event in the civil rights movement, and as the end of the era for African-American schools.
Erected 2008 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 15413.)
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African AmericansEducation.
Location. 30° 16.222′ N, 97° 43.462′ W. Marker is in Austin, Texas, in Travis County. Marker is on Comal Street north of Angelina Street, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1161 Angelina Street, Austin TX 78702, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. George Washington Carver Branch Library (within shouting distance of this marker); Thompson Home (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct
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line); Wesley United Methodist Church (about 600 feet away); Site of Old Anderson High School / Kealing Jr. High School (approx. 0.2 miles away); James L. Farmer, Jr. (approx. 0.2 miles away); Southgate-Lewis House (approx. 0.2 miles away); Laurine Cecil Anderson (approx. 0.2 miles away); King-Tears Mortuary (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Austin.
Credits. This page was last revised on February 10, 2021. It was originally submitted on May 31, 2011, by Keith Peterson of Cedar Park, Texas. This page has been viewed 981 times since then and 19 times this year. Last updated on February 10, 2021, by Richard Denney of Austin, Texas. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on May 31, 2011, by Keith Peterson of Cedar Park, Texas. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.
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Mar. 6, 2021