The History of Lincoln High: "The Big Red": The Lincoln High School History Project, written and administered by Arthur ...


Material Information

The History of Lincoln High: "The Big Red": The Lincoln High School History Project, written and administered by Arthur O. White
Series Title:
Lincoln High School, 1915-1991
Physical Description:
White, Arthur O.
Publication Date:
Physical Location:
Box: 6
Folder: History of Lincoln


Spatial Coverage:
North America -- United States of America -- Florida -- Alachua -- Gainesville

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
System ID:

Full Text


Dr. White wishes to acknowledge the vital
aid given the project by Mr. T. B. McPherson
who lived and made thirty-six years of Lincoln
High School history. The author also received
assistance from members of his graduate course
in the History of Education at the University of
Florida and from friends of Lincoln High School.

Alumni Committee

Newspaper Committee

Interview Committee

School Board Records Committee

Lincoln High School Records

Editorial Committee

Sally Ann Rice

Bonnie Bennett
Barbara Keener
Maria Llabre
Len Richardson

Barry Frenchman
Paul Grossman
Terry Leira
Ann McKirachan
Richard Palmer

Kandy Friese
Richard Peterson

Susan Kilmachte
Diann Lapin
Dottie Roberts

Paul Grossman
Tana Lee White

"I cried when Lincoln closed. It was my
senior year and I felt lost." So recalls
Jacqueline Fuller, a student at Lincoln for five
years when Principal John Dukes officially
ended Lincoln as a black academic high school
on January 31, 1970. For nearly half a century
this school had been a source of pride and inspi-
ration for Gainesville's black community.
According to Neil Butler who graduated in 1917
and became mayor of Gainesville the year after
Lincoln closed, the students felt "fantastically
happy at belonging there." Mrs. Cornelius Jones
Smith, Lincoln's librarian for the final fifteen
years, described the school as "magnetic.' Others
connected with the school used such terms as
"beautiful heritage," "pride," Happiness," "I
loved Lincoln," "sense of belonging," "child
centered" "a warm family setting" and solid soul."

The man most responsible for this warm
spirit was A. Quinn Jones. Born in the heart /
of Florida's tobacco country near 0uincy, in __,
Jones realized his drive for self betterment when
taking his first job at age eight to help support
his seven brothers and sisters. From his father
a truck farmer, he had already learned frugality
and the value of hard work. The principal of the
one-room schoolhbuse which Jones attended
encouraged him to go on to high school and to
Florida A & M University in Tallahassee. True
to those who believed in him, Jones paid his way
through high school and college by working in a

tobacco factory, delivering milk on his campus,
cleaning university buildings and serving as
head waiter in the school dining room. In
June 1915, the month he graduated, Jones began
his teaching career in a converted church for
$22.00 a month. The next year he became princi-
pal of a four-teacher school in Marianna, Florida
for $25.00 a month. In the year 1917, he
practically doubled his salary as head of the
Pensacola elementary school and after another
year, he increased his salary to $90.00 a month
by taking over as principal of a black high
school with eight teachers in Pensacola.

After three years at this school his
ability became widely known and in 1921, Alachua
County.r Superintendent of Education Mr. E. R.
Simmons hired him at $125.00 a month to become
principal of Union Academy in Gainesville.
This school deeded to the black population by
the Freedmen's Bureau in 1868 and taken over by
the board thiry years later had been allowed to
deteriorate into an over crowded, rotting wooden
structure. However, in July 1920, county free-
holders had passed a bond for $150,000 to build
a new high school for whites and "a new black
schoolhouse." In March 1922, the board received
an acceptable bid to build the schools.

Named by its patrons for Abraham Lincoln,
the new black school opened in September 1923.
The five black patrons including Charles Chestnut
Sr., a funeral home owner, and Charley Duval, a

shoe store owner had worked closely with Mr. W.
R. Thomas, President of the First National Bank
and trustee for Gainesville's special tax district,
to insure that black children received a superior
facility. Their efforts resulted in a two story
brick building considered the best black school
structure in Florida and which equaled the new
high school built for Gainesville whites. Plack
children sat at "patent" desks in sixteen
beautifully plastered classrooms, each with four
large windows, cloakroom storage closet, black-
boards and two hot-water radiators. They walked
on solid oak floors down airy twelve-foot-wide
corridors and drank from four water fountains
placed outside two modern restrooms. According
to a student who had attended both schools, to
compare Union Academy with Lincoln High School,
"is like comparing and outdoor privy with a fine
tiled bathroom."

Jones prepared to place the school among
the best in the South. Convinced that education
went beyond the hours of the school day, he
involved himself and his teachers deeply in
the lives of the record 800 students who filled
his building nearly to capacity in September,
1923. Finding the county road department too
busy landscaping Gainesville High School to
plant anything around Lincoln, Jones and his
teachers did their own landscaping. Similarly,
when he found that the school did not have a
library he launched a book drive that amassed
a dusty collection of books, mostly from attics,

that helped make Lincoln the second black high
school accredited by the state of Florida.

It seemed that every obstacle represented
an invigorating challenge to "Prof." Jones.
Warned by the school board during his first
year that a shortage of funds would close Lincoln
three months early, he kept the school going with
a successful fund-raising drive. Students soli-
cited money door to door while faculty, admini-
stration and P.T.A. planned money-raising events
including a benefit concert by the Clark College
Singers of Atlanta at Mount Pleasant M. E. Church.
The drive raised $600 that increased with
donations left at Duval's Shoe Store on East
Union Street enabling Lincoln to graduate eight
young people. Members of this group later
became a college math professor, a school
principal, two Lincoln English teachers, a
physician, a sports editor and a musician.

The fondest memories of Lincoln's former
students often involved the personal interest
Jones and his faculty had taken in them. John
Dukes speaks of the time during his student days
in 1947 when Jones took him aside to talk to
him and "he even put his hand on me." John
Cheeseborough, a 1935 graduate who went to the
University of Southern California and became
a respected Los Angeles accountant, traces his
success to the way "Prof." Jones taught algebra.
Another former student stressed that Jones never
had to strike a student and one afternoon quieted

a noisy auditorium "simply by moving his ears."

The Lincoln faculty, many of them former
graduates encouraged by Jones to go on to
college and then return to their high school
alma mater as teachers, took similar interests
in their students. A home room teacher guided
the same children through the twelve grades.
These teachers often provided needy students
with clothing, food and shelter. Extracurricular
activities proliferated as teachers gave freely
of th6ir time, even meeting with students on
Sunday. In preparation for the frequent teas,
parties and special events, the girls dressed
in the teachers' homes. For most students their
out-of-class, school activities contributed
vitally to their development because teachers
sermonized on Christian living and gave advice
on personal problems. This fostered a feeling
of commitment at Lincoln, what many referred
to as "belonging to a great family."

Such dedication led to inspiring teaching.
Mrs. Mabel Dorsey, a 1939 graduate who taught
between 1944 and 1968, describes her popular
"Marriage and the Family Course," during which
she used role playing, community experts, obser-
vations and problem solving to deal with courting,
marriage, homemaking and "having babies." Sam
Taylor, who graduated in 1965 and six years later
was elected president of the student body at the
University of Florida, remembers a teacher who
"turned me on to English." He adds that perhaps
another fifteen percent have stable jobs while
the rest entered the services or "trusted to luck."

The most popular activity at Lincoln was
football. First organized at the school in 1923
by volunteer Coach Charles Chestnut Sr., Lincoln
vent undefeated for its first season against
such opposition as Cookman College of Jacksonville
and against lstak College. The team's first
defeat sparked considerable interest with the
Gainesville Sun reporting on November 18, 1924:
"Battling fiercely against overwhelming odds the
game Lincoln High School eleven bowed its color
in defeat." The article described how "a huge
pack of Negro heavyweights were the conquerors
of the local machine."

However, not until the McPherson years did
football attain its zenith at Lincoln High School.
A graduate of Florida A & M University, who had
played football under Mr. Charles Chestnut, Sr.
Mr. T. B. McPherson took over as athletic direc-
tor and football coach in 1933. Playing both
high schools and colleges, many with more students
than Lincoln, his teams vent undefeated for the
first eight years. In 1939, Lincoln captured
a national Negro Championship and began attracting
large crowds composed of both races. Mr.
McPherson retired as coach in 1949 with a record
of 222 wins, 13 losses, and 22 ties.

Mr. McPherson, who stayed on as athletic
director, gave youth more than football. Often
referred to as "Reverend" he taught his boys
friendship, respect for authority and discipline.
He also helped them to believe in themselves and
for some secured athletic scholarships. A good

scout, McPherson supported promising country
boys in his home while they won trophies for
Lincoln as McPherson's "corn-fed boys."

Famed athletes developed under McPherson's
tutelage. Jerry Simmons played for the Chicago
Bears, Wayne Patrick plays for the Buffalo
Bills, and Larry James Plays for the Canadian
Football League. McPherson, also the track
coach, led his team to the Florida State Track
Championship in 1935 and one runner Ralph
Brockington vent to the nationals in Dallas,
Texas. Jesse Heard, a football player under C*Vat-
1cPherson who after playing for the San Diego l
Chargers returned to Lincoln, has among his t QI
outstanding memories, "graduation day and my
return [to Lincoln] as an instructor and head
football coach" from 1963 to 1969.

Football inspired "fantastic Spirit." Pep
rallies preceded every home game where the
school colors of red and white for courage and
purity, and the school mascot, a terrier
symbolizing intelligence, were prominently dis-
played. Students thunderously expressed how
"very proud they were of the "Big Red."

Only the marching band rivaled football in
popularity. In spite of being denied county funds,
Jerry C. Miller started a band in 1946. He
solicited between $1400 and $1500 in the community
which together with donated instruments was
enough to equip forty marchers. The band gave
its first concert in April 1947 with the boys

dressed in white shirts and white pants, black
shoes and black tiel Subsequent fund-raising
efforts provided uniforms of confederate gray
which were later changed to royal blue and
finally to red and white. Practicing until
1956 in a two-room "shack" across from the school,
"the mighty Lincoln band" livened up football
games, marched in many paradeft took prizes
against larger school bands and became the first
black band to march in the Gator Bowl. Together
with Lincoln's famed choral group, the band
performed popular renditions of the Battle Bym
of the Republic, Exodus, Impossible Dream and
during the final year did Bye Bye Birdie.

Lincoln soon became the center of the black
community. People looked forward with excitement
to attending the school's various function, and
the athletic teams received support whether
they were "up or down." Neighborhood school
facilities while children and adults wandered
through its halls and grounds. Proud to have
their own neighbor hood school, black citizens
gave generously to fulfill Lincoln's needs and
"you could raise $100 to $200 in an hour for
something like the Miss Lincoln Contest because
everybody knew the government wouldn't give
us money." If a girl didn't have a formal for
the Junior-Senior Prom someone would get her one,
another would get her shoes and another would
pay to get her hair done. For black youth,
Lincoln was the place where you showed off your
new clothes or met your girl friend from Alachua.
A 1964 graduate described it as "our place in
the community, it all happened there."

Unfortunately, racial discrimination lurked
beneath the surface of Lincoln's apparent success.
Until 1954, the salaries of Lincoln's teachers
averaged about ten to thirty percent below those
of white teachers with similar background and
responsibility. Even in that year, Jones's
salary was $700 below the salary paid the princi-
pal 6f Gainesville High School, although Jones
had more experience, equal educational qualifica-
tions and headed fifty-nine teachers while the
white administrator led only forty-six teachers.
During Lincoln's first years when the required
texts were bought by the children, teachers
carried on with "a book here and there." Later,
when the state provided the books, former
students remembered being hurt when they discovered
that their books were "hand-me-downs" from white
schools. Even a Lincoln diploma only cost the
board $.90 each in 1941 while a Gainesville
High School diploma cost $1.85 each.

Old timers remembered double sessions in the
elementary school as enrollment creeped up to
1,250 students by the 1930's, 400 over the
buildings capacity. Partitions appeared in class-
rooms which remained "terribly crowded with
thirty to thirty-two students." Sprinkled among
the school population were young people from the
country, who lived alone in Gainesville or with
relatives, so they could attend Lincoln, for many
years the only black high school in Alachua
County. In 1953, students and teachers volunteered
to take materials from two abandoned white schools
forc.a classroom annex which saved the county
school board $5,000.

Maintenance was a chronic problem. With a
maid and a janitor serving as the total staff,
the-students volunteered to keep the school
clean. In November, 1952, the P.T.A. had to
request that the school board have the playground
leveled and the incinerator cleaned.

Drop outs persistently plagued Lincoln's
staff. In 1938, it was estimated that of every
250 students who entered the eighth grade, only
between 35 to 50 would graduate. A 1943
graduate remembers that of the 110 children who
started with him in the first grade 33 made
graduation. Principal Dukes stressed that even
in the later years the drop out rate was very
high, citing pregnancy, marriage and economic
problems as the major causes. Others inter-
viewed, stated that during most of Lincoln's
history of high school diploma only qualified a
black for the same menial job that his friend
had obtained two years earlier by dropping out
of school.

Segregation necessarily isolated the black
community. Racial mixing in Gainesville was
extremely rare during the Lincoln years. Even
a man of A. Quinn Jones'sstature could not par-
ticipate in the white principals' meetings. The
major liaison between the communities was a black
by the name of Harold "Rat" Jones. He made things
run smoothly and "kept the black comnmity from
interfering with the white system." Though the
county had hired a white to supervise black
schools, Jones did all the hiring and firing and

gave each teacher his check in person. According
to Al Daniels, a 1946 graduate who later served
as the last chairman of Lincoln's social studies
department, Jones ran a "tight ship" from an old
building on the Lincoln campus.

Despite such conditions Prof. Jones quali-
fied the school for regional accreditation, but
school officials refused the necessary recommendation,
In 1942, after it Was discovered that the Florida
Committee of the Scouthern Association of
Colleges and Schools had visited Lincoln, a
county school official warned Jones "D--- that
Southern stuff." Lincoln's principal understood
that black education wasn't very popular in the

Rumblings on the national level indicated
that such conditions would soon be changed by
federal power. In 1954 the United States Supreme
Court in the unanimous decision of Brown vs. The
Board of Education declared segregated schools
"inherently unequal" and against the United States
Constitution. A survey indicated that after
Florida blacks heard of the decision most thought
full integration would be accomplished in ten

However, school officials in Gainesville,
like many in the rest of the South, tried to
avoid federal action by equalizing the dual school
system. Since the late 1940's the board had
contemplated building each race a new high school.
But not until June 2, 1954, two weeks following

October 2, bids accepted for a $1,058,465 black
high school and a $1,179,525 white high school.
The board also decided that Lincoln would become
a junior-senior high school fed by three black
elementary centers, one of which was later
housed in the old Lincoln building renamed A. Q.
Jones. Finally, in July 1956, the board accepted
the new structure, two months after the Supreme
Court had ordered the lower courts to begin
enforcing school desegregation "with all deliberate'

Black adolescents now received their education
in a magnificent structure. Architectural plans
had been drawn in consultation with members of
the faculty, administration and black community.
The resulting building reflected the most modern
techniques of design to comfortably accommodate
1500 students. Special features included thirty
spacious classrooms with walls of black boards
and bulletin boards, science laboratories for
physics, chemistry, biology and general science,
a library with seats for 1500 patrons and with
14,000 volumes, 10 for each youth enrolled in the
first class of September 1956, a gymnasium with
the best lighting and hardwood courts in North
Central Florida and an auditorium with a
"marvelous" 110 foot roof span and 800 seats.
Other advantages included walls of stucco and
steel instead of masonry, covered walkways with
sliding doors for weather control and 54 acres
of playing field. On March 17, 1957, the
Gainesville Sun proudly announced that Lincoln
High School had been selected by the American
Association of School Administrators as one of

the outstanding new schools in the United States.

With occupation of this facility, the
pupil-teacher ratio fell below 25 to 1 making
the school again eligible for regional accredi-
tation. Jones had taken advantage of the more
generous attitude after the 1954 Supreme Court
desegregation decision to complete the three-
year self-study required for accreditation.
During this period he had assured approval by
persuading one of his teachers to become a
certified guidance counselor and another to
become a certified librarian. On January 31,
1957, A. Quinn Jones retired after serving
Lincoln for thirty-four years, but the school
continued to prosper from his dedicated labor
and the following academic year became the
second black school in Florida's history to
gain accredittion-'from the Southern'Association.

Notwithstanding, racial discrimination
continued to undermine the school's program.
Black youth remained isolated in the canmunity
and when Sam Taylor asked to visit Gainesville
High School in 1964, Lincoln's principal said,
"It could not be done." With about seventy
percent of the children bussed in from outside
Gainesville, many passed white schools, distance
precluded most of these children from enjoying
sports, dances and other special events.
Crowding became an increasing problem with the
school's enrollment, going eighty-four over the
building's capacity by 1965. The drop-out rate
stayed high averaging near thirteen percent of

the enrollment each year between 1959 and 1965
and several children were below grade level in
reading and mathematics. The textbooks, still
ancient hand-Ae-downs from the white high school,
were always too few to serve the forty to fifty
students sometimes assigned to one classroom.
The lack of air conditioning made the school
sizzle in the Florida sun. Because of poor site
location, water seeped into the lower rooms and
the gymnasium floor had to be replaced.

In 1964, the Southern Association put
Lincoln on warning. For some time the atmosphere
at Lincoln, because of crowding and teacher
overloads, had become what one former admina-
strator called "do your own thing." When the
evaluation team came to the school, Sam Taylor
claimed it was a "farce." Books appeared in
classrooms, students stayed in their seats,
dressed their best, were issued hall passes,
while teachers taught for four days. As soon as
the team left the building things returned to
their "normal chaos." Yet, the Southern Asso-
ciation warned the administration that seventeen
teachers taught overloaded classes, ten teachers
taught too many classes per day and the library
was 1500 volumes below standard. Under such
conditions Dukes recalls that towards the end
of Lincoln's history less than twenty percent
of the graduates went on to college. Taylor
summed it up, "the new Lincoln had a shell of
a building that looked good from the outside,
very nice."

As a result the "integration fever" caught
on in the black community. With freedom riders
moving through the South in the early sixties
and the national government passing civil rights
acts, a new awareness penetrated the black
community. McPherson's son David related how
"in the 1958 to 1964 era, Stokeley Carmichael
was the biggest thing. I'11 never forget he
spoke at Lincoln and turned everybody's head
around." Johnny Rivers, who graduated a decade
earlier, remembered that his group "wasn't aware
we were being s--- [cheated]. The issues
weren't before us as they are now." Soon the
talk down at Cleveland's Barber Shop, the center
of local gossip, turned to the issue of inte-
grating Lincoln High School.

With the adoption of a freedom of choice
plan by the county board in 1967, many Lincoln
students began to drift away. In that year the
board had received a federal order to desegre-
gate the entire county, Although the board had
a plan made in consultation with a state education
survey team whereby Lincoln would became a voca-
tional-technical center supported by federal,
state and local monies and a new high school
would be built in the black community to be used
by both races, the board decided to forestall
federal action by instituting a freedom-of-
choice plan. The following September, 360
Lincoln students elected to 'ter white high
schools. The next year, another 117 left Lincoln
for white schools and in 1969 an additional 276
Lincoln students registered in white schools.

While the plan relieved Lincoln's crowding, it
tended to draw away some of the schools most
talented students. For example, the football
team lost much of its effectiveness when the
quarterback enrolled in Gainesville High School
and the band master Jerry Miller complained
that he was losing many good musicians to white

Though the students remained free to choose
thi6r school, a few white teachers were assigned
to Lincoln beginning in 1967, Within two years
their number had grown to an estimated twenty-one
instructors among the staff of seventy-eight.
One of these teachers, who came in March 1968 to
teach eighth grade social studies, remembers no
threats or racial slurs, but perceived a subtle
hostility in some students and faculty "because
I was white." A white University of Florida
coed, who interned at Lincoln in the spring of
1969, observed that the white teachers had "a
terrible time with discipline. They desperatAY
needed training with working with blacks."

On February 26, 1969, the Alachua County
School Board voted to put its 1967 plan into
effect making Lincoln a vocational-technical e
center and building a new academic high school
for both races. The board, as reported in the
newspaper, had explained that the freedom-of-
choice plan was a failure because no whites had
chosen to attend black schools, while only 1,512
or twenty-one percent of county black students
had entered white schools.

Radio, television and newspaper reports
beamed the news to the Gainesville community.
Black residents remained quiet until in November
the Fifth Circuit Court ordered the county
board to desegregate all schools that had remained
black or close them. During a series of public
meetings at Lincoln, blacks expressed vehement
opposition to any change in Lincoln's academic
status. As a compromise measure, N.A.A.C.P.
official Charles Chestnut III, a grandson of the
fighting terriers first football coach, and
Russell Henry, a community spokesman, presented
a petition on November 20, 1969 from 398 blacks
that the new Junior-senior high school be named
Lincoln. Chestnut and Henry argued that the
retention of the name Lincoln "would be black
identity and a continuation of tradition." Imme-
diately, Dr. William Enneking moved for the Lincoln
name, later explaining that the same treatment
should be given Lincoln that was accorded by the
board in perpetuating the Buchholz name. The
board, however, voted four to one to accept the
recommendation of its building committee that
the new school be name Lakewood after the
neighborhood. The following day the Tapa
Tribune reported how Henry angrily "stomped out
of the meeting following the vote."

The next Tuesday, 1,325 Lincoln students
stayed home from school signaling sixteen days
of boycotts, marches and speeches. For eleven
school days between November 28 and December 12,
Lincoln's attendance dropped to an average of

seventy students, costing the county an
estimated $2,000 a day in state aid money.
Florida newspapers reported that on eight days
as many as 1,200 students, singing and chanting
Lincoln High School songs and cheers, marched
miles from their school to the courthouse, from
there to the Plaza of the Americas at the
University of Florida and then to the school
board office. The marchers were orderly, had
a parade permit and cleaned up the grounds where
they massed. On December 3, the group's
spokesman, Wayne Mosely, senior class vice-
president, who like many other seniors Jeopar-
dized his graduation by boycotting classes, asserted
that the name of the new school was the the
issue: "Lincoln is predominately black.
Gainesville High School is predominately white,
if they can integrate G.H.S. they can integrate
Lincoln. We will stay out until they do."

These new demands placed the board in a
dilema. Since the board's February decision to
close Lincoln as an academic high school, the
fifth Circuit Court had accepted the plan and
the Alachua County Court had camended the
board's plan. The particular strength of the
plan, the board asserted, was that it best
solved the problem of transporting for racial
balance. Any new plan would involve considerable
expense, perhaps further controversy and the
possibility of rejection by the federal court.

Officials made strenuous efforts to commu-
nicate withthe students and avoid violence.
Alachua County Education Superintendent W. S.
"Tiny" Talbot cut short a trip to Tampa to be
on the scene at Gainesville. He stood in the

rain for hours and used a police ar public
address system to explain the board's plan.
When asked repeatedly why do you bus blacks
and not whites, the superintendent referred
to the complicated county zoning system.
Talbot also asserted that Lincoln's becoming
a vocational-technical center was "one of the
outstanding efforts in the South and in no way
or matter should be considered a slow learner
school:' When hearing these statements the
crowd promised not to harm the superintendent
physically but "lash Talbot with words."

Assistant County Superintendent Tmm
Tomlinson hoped "we can ride this one out with-
out arrests." When 300 students early in the
boycott occupied the school board office,
Alachua County Sheriff Deputies stood by as the
students were persuaded to leave. After this
incident, the students contented themselves
with making lunch on the school board office

Plainclothes detectives patrolled Lincoln's
halls and dozed in chairs by its locked
entrances, while the' Shool board discussed
the issue. At a meeting on December 2, the
board gave everyone a chance to speak and
presented County Judge John L. Connell who
warned parents that juvenile court action would
be taken against the estimated 500 to 600 boy-
cotting students under age fifteen that were
violating the truancy law. The black community's

appointed spokesman Reverend L. A. Haisley of
the Greater Bethel A.M.E. Church and who in
1965 had given the commencement sermon at
Lincoln responded that parents were not encoura-
ging the students to remain out of school.
Board member B. L. Samuels though "the black
community would have welcomed the new school
in their community and the phasing out of

An impasse developed between the board
and the protesters. On December 9, Connell
began summoning parents to his truancy hearings,
but 1,100 students remained out of school
and parents vowed "they can throw all us
parents in Jail."

Two days later black leaders and the county
school board reached an agreement. On December
12, Samuels and Enneking presented a seven
point proposal which specified that John Dukes,
Lincoln's principal be assigned a principalship
in Gainesville and that a bi-racial committee of
adults and students from the new school renamed
Eastside would "express their preference for a
head football coach and choral director." The
proposal passed three to two and a standing room
crowd heard Samuels proclaim, "We are now living
in an integrated world and no matter how any-
one feels about integration it is a fact of life."

Urged by Mosely and Henry, the students
returned to class within a few days, but they

were not happy. Most students felt school
officials had sold them out to Vhite prejudice
against going to a former black school. Instead
of closing Lincoln "they should have given us
a chance to prove we were as good as they."
Some felt so angry that they wanted to "tear up
the school so that whites wouldn't have it."
And on the last school day January 30, a "racial
disturbance" resulted in seventeen arrests, the
hospitalization of two teachers and ninety-one
broken windows in a school that for its first
forty-six years had been the peaceful setting
of black education. The next day Principal
Dukes wrote Lincoln's epitaph in his record

The senior high school students grades 10
to 12 from Gainesville were assigned to
Gainesville High School. Those from
Rochelle and Island Grove were assigned to
Hawthorne High. Students from Archer and
nearby areas were sent to Buchholz Junior-
Senior High, Eastside Junior-Senior High,
Howard Bishop and Westwood.

The history of Lincoln High School repre-w
sets a human triumph over adversity. Racial
discrimination, inadequate financing, shortages
of supplies, frequent overcrowding and other
burdens could not prevent the administrators,
teachers, students and the black community from
making Lincoln High School a wonderful experience
worth fighting to keep. The positive effect

Lincoln had on its students should be understood,
because many who advocated its closing felt
certain that blacks would be glad to be rid of
this school as a source of degradation.
Instead, for most of those connected with Lincoln
the words of their alma mater "Dear Lincoln High,
we love thee, thy name will ever be" had real


Bennett, Bonnie; Keener, Karen; Llabre, Marie
and Richardson Len. Lincoln High School
History Project: Newspaper Comsittee.
Unpublished Paper. University of
Florida, 1972

Big Red Fighting Terriers, 1969. Football
Banquet. Ditto, 1969.

Dedication: Lincoln High School. Gainesville,

Frenchman, Barry. Interview with Jerry C. Miller,
Lincoln Band Instructor, 1946-1970.
Summer, 1972.

SInterview with William J. Stokes,
Lincoln Faculty, 1968-1970. Suaer, 1972.

____. Interview with Jacqueline Fuller,
Lincoln Student, 1965-1970. Sumer, 1972.

Interview with David McPherson,
Lincoln Student, 1958-1964. Suioaer, 1972.

_____ Grossman, Paul, McKirachan, Ann;
SLiera, Terry; Palmer, Richard. A Report by
the Interview Committee. Unpublished Paper.
University of Florida, 1972.

Frick, Herman to Otha W. Nealy. May 4, 1964.
Unpublished Letter. Lincoln High School

___ no date, Unpublished Letter. Lincoln
High School Files.

Gainesville Independent. 1969-1970.

Gainesville Sun. 1923-1970.

Gainesville, The Lincolnian. Vol. 31. 1965.

Grossman, Paul. Interview with A. Quinn Jones,
Principal of Lincoln High School, 1922-
1957. July 10, 1972. August 27, 1972.

Interview with I. H. Caffey. Lincoln
Student 1930-1932. Sumner, 1972.

Interview ivth Thelma Jordan, Lincoln
Student 1923-1926; Faculty 1944-1957. Sum-
mer, 1972

.____ Interview with Jerry C. Miller, Lincoln
Band Instructor, 196, 1970. Summer, 1972.

Kilmachte, Susan; Lapin, Diann and Roberts,
Dottie. Lincoln High School Project:
Report of the Records Committee. Unpublished
Paper. University of Florida. 1972.

Leiva, Terry. Interview with Catherine Taylor,
Lincoln Graduate, 1932. Sumer, 1972

Interview with Neil Butler, Graduate,
1947'. Surmer, 1972.

S; Interview with T. B. McPherson, .
Athletic Director and Football Coach, 1933-
1944, Athletic Director, 1949-1970. Sumer
1972. Faculty 1955-1970. Summer, 1972.

Lincoln High School Philosophy, mimeography, no

Lincoln High School Files.

Lincoln High School: Thirty-Sixth Comencement
Exercises. Gainesville. 1960.

Lincoln vs. Douglas. Football Program. Gaines-
ville, no date.

McKirachan, Ann. Interview with Cornialia Jones
Smith. Student, 1946. Faculty, 1955-
1970. July 11, 1972.

Interview with Daphney Williams,
Student 1930-35, Jul 11, 1972.

Interview with Mable Dorsey, Lincoln
Student, 1939. Faculty, 1963-1968. July
14, 1972.

O. Interview with Oliver Jones, Lincoln
Student 1937, Faculty, 1952-1959. Sumer,

Palmer, Richard. Interview with Albert Daniels,
Lincoln Student 1946, Faculty, 1969-T0.
Sumer 1972.

____ Interview with John Dukes, Lincoln
Student 1946, Principal, 1966-1970. Sumer

Rice, Sally Ann. Lincoln High Project"
Illustrious Ali i. Unpublished Paper.
University of Florida, 1972.

Tgap Tribune. 1969-1970

Terrier: Lincoln Hie School Year Book.
Gaineaville, 1 .

L^ g^^^


The Lincoln High School History Project

Written and administered by:

Arthur 0. White Ed. D.

Assistant Professor of
Education at the
University of Florida