“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Borger in Hutchinson County, Texas — The American South (West South Central)

Booker T. Washington School

Booker T. Washington School Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Kirchner, March 15, 2016
1. Booker T. Washington School Marker
Inscription.  Two years after Borger's founding, a 1928 scholastic census counted five African American students in two families. Bethel Baptist Church, on the city's west side, hosted the first school for black children, with Mrs. Tallie Anderson Smith, who stayed for about fifteen years, hired as the first teacher for six grades. The school, still hosted by the church, moved to the north side of Borger. In 1931, in a one-room frame building at Brain and 11th Streets, the Borger ISD established its first school for black students, named Booker T. Washington School for the noted educator. In 1936 the campus included a one-teacher school and as many as fifty students.

R.G. Cofield and his wife, Maye Della, came to Borger in 1946 to further education of black children. Under the leadership of Mr. Cofield as principal and his wife as a teacher, the faculty grew from two to seven, a new brick building was completed, and two former barracks from Pampa Air Force Base were adapted as a gymnasium and additional classrooms. The school was also extended to twelve grades, with John L. Miles the first graduate in 1949. The school curriculum continued to grow,
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and the Dragons and Dragonettes excelled at basketball and other sports. After Brown v. Board of Education in 1954 initiated nationwide desegregation of schools, the Board of Education voted to integrate grades seven through twelve in spring 1956. That fall, Booker T. Washington became an elementary school and older black students went to Sam Houston Junior High and Borger Senior High Schools. As a result of desegregation, Booker T. Washington School closed in 1964, and most of the teachers left Borger to seek other jobs. The school is fondly remembered as an important part of Borger's African American Community.
Erected 2013 by Texas Historical Commission. (Marker Number 17603.)
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African AmericansEducation. A significant historical year for this entry is 1928.
Location. 35° 40.755′ N, 101° 23.17′ W. Marker is in Borger, Texas, in Hutchinson County. Marker can be reached from North Brain Street north of East 11th street. Marker is in parking lot for city park. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1205 North Brain Street, Borger TX 79007, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. East Ward Elementary School (approx. ¼ mile away); Ace Borger Home (approx. 0.4 miles away); Twentieth Century Club (approx.
Booker T. Washington School Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Kirchner, March 15, 2016
2. Booker T. Washington School Marker
half a mile away); 1950 GMC Winch Truck (approx. half a mile away); Auxiliary Equipment from the Early Borger Oil Field (approx. half a mile away); Allis-Chalmers/Cooper Winch Tractor (approx. half a mile away); The Panhandle Oil Boom & the Borger Field (approx. half a mile away); Nitro Storage Safe & Do-It-Yourself Drilling Rig (approx. half a mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Borger.
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on March 26, 2016, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona. This page has been viewed 487 times since then and 89 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on March 26, 2016, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona.

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Dec. 9, 2023