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Houston in Harris County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Phillis Wheatley High School

 
 
Phillis Wheatley High School Marker image. Click for full size.
By James Hulse, April 11, 2021
1. Phillis Wheatley High School Marker
Inscription.  

Phillis Wheatley High School, Houston's third oldest high school for blacks, is named for Phillis Wheatley (1753-1784), renowned African-American poet and author. The first campus, located at 3415 Lyons Avenue in the Fifth Ward, was the former McGowan Elementary School building for white students. It opened on January 31, 1927 with 490 students and 20 teachers, led by Principal E.O. Smith. In 1929, a new building designed by Harry D. Payne was constructed on the Lyons Avenue campus.

By 1940, the school was so overcrowded that classes were held in three shifts. In 1950, a $2.5 million 14-acre campus opened at 4900 Market Street. Designed by architects MacKie & Kamrath in a Frank Lloyd Wright-influenced modernist style, this facility was the most expensive high school in Houston at the time. In 2004, an alumnus of the Wheatley Class of 1956 designed a new facility on the 4900 Market Street site. All of the 1949-1950 buildings, except the auditorium, were razed and the new facility, which faces 4801 Providence Street, opened in Fall 2006.

Rich sports traditions include the annual Turkey Day Classic football game with
Phillis Wheatley High School and Marker image. Click for full size.
By James Hulse, April 11, 2021
2. Phillis Wheatley High School and Marker
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cross-town rival Jack Yates High School, held from 1946 to 1966, and the legendary basketball teams with 17 state championships between 1942 and 1978. Wheatley High School has produced several distinguished politicians, doctors, lawyers, judges, ministers, community leaders, educators, scientists, engineers, athletes, musicians, entertainers, and other proud graduates. Some notable alumni include Barbara Jordan, George Thomas "Mickey" Leland, Arnett Cobb, Illinois Jacquet, Frank C. Mann, and Artice "C-Boy" Vaughn. Long-time faculty members E.O. Smith, Dr. John E. Codwell, William Moore, James M. Thomas and many others instilled "Scholarship, Character, and Service" in their students for over 85 years.
 
Erected 2012 by Harris County Historical Commission.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African AmericansEducation. A significant historical date for this entry is January 31, 1927.
 
Location. 29° 46.232′ N, 95° 19.209′ W. Marker is in Houston, Texas, in Harris County. Marker is at the intersection of Providence Street and Finnigan Drive, on the right when traveling west on Providence Street. The marker is located at the main entrance of Wheatley High School. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 4801 Providence Street, Houston TX 77020, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Safety Follows Wisdom (approx. 1.2
The view of the Phillis Wheatley High School Marker from the street image. Click for full size.
By James Hulse, April 11, 2021
3. The view of the Phillis Wheatley High School Marker from the street
miles away); Myers-Spalti Manufacturing Plant (approx. 1.8 miles away); Hidalgo Park Quiosco (approx. 2.2 miles away); Merchants and Manufacturers Building (approx. 2.4 miles away); Site of Confederate Prison Compound (approx. 2.4 miles away); Founding of Harris County (approx. 2.4 miles away); Harris County (approx. 2.4 miles away); Annunciation Church (approx. 2.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Houston.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 14, 2021. It was originally submitted on April 14, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas. This page has been viewed 37 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on April 14, 2021, by James Hulse of Medina, Texas.

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May. 17, 2021