Thursday, February 22, 2007
7 News Features: Black History Month: Dillard High School
February is Black History Month, and, each week, we visit local locations that played a fundamental role in shaping, defining and redefining the African American culture in South Florida. Today we profile a historic school house. 7's Luanne Sorrell with more.
WSVN -- Community Activist Tony Thompson: "We have even the hand-me-down books."
Step inside old Dillard High School and you are taking a step back in history.
Tony Thompson: "An old washing machine here. You see the iron pot that the water was heated in. Your clothes were washed here on the scrub board."
The two-story, six-room school house located on First Avenue and northwest Fourth Street in Fort Lauderdale was the first and only school for blacks in the city from the time it was built in 1924 until desegregation in the late sixties.
Tony Thompson: "The is coach Cato Roach and he was the first bus driver for Dillard."
Thompson, a community activist showed us around the school turned museum which is now on the historical register.
Tony Thompson: "She went on to become Dr. Niara Sudarkasa and President of Lincoln University."
Touring the building you will learn about former students and teachers who went on to impact America and the world.
Tony Thompson: "You may not know the name Cannonball Adderley, but he went on to become a very famous jazz musician with a saxophone. In fact, he was the first jazz musician to have a commercially successful jazz album."
The Minds On, Hands On Gallery in the school teaches children and adults African history as well. As you can see it's chock-full of African artifacts, and the fun in the this room is that everything is hands on.
Tony Thompson: "It's very important that young people of all ages come and learn about the importance of education and what we've gone through to get to where we are today."
You come visit the Old Dillard Museum Tuesday thru Saturday from noon until 4 p.m. Wednesdays they are open till 8. Admission is free, but donations are accepted.