In my youth I lived in Joplin, MO. I graduated High School in 1982 and subsequently moved to Springfield, MO and later St. Louis MO. I remember this rather large brick building on one of the main roads across from the Lincoln-Mercury Dealer. A sign in front of it proclaimed it to be "Lincoln School" but it was empty and never used by the school district in the time I lived in Joplin.
Come to find out it had been the "Negro School" in Joplin. This was where blacks were provided "separate, but equal" education in the local school district. There was also a park provided for them as well as other facilities to keep blacks from intermingling with the white citizens of Joplin. This was a city that created a hospital strictly to keep from having to be treated by Catholics. (Joplin never had a Jewish hospital. I don't think there were enough Jews in Joplin to support one. The synagogue was just down the alley from where I grew up but apparently only had a traveling Rabbi and maybe a handful of attendees. However there was a Jewish Hospital in St. Louis. It was merged with the much larger Barnes Hospital just recently). I don't know when the school was closed. I don't know when the school was opened. I have no idea if it had any famous alumni. In searching for the school online, you would think it would have at least a picture, but its as if the school never existed. Even the building is gone now.
I find myself wondering what kind of memories, stories and the like existed for that school. Certainly it had some people who remembered it and what kind of teachers it had. Maybe its shame that they were kept apart from the society, but its a legacy that should be remembered.
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