Friday, October 30, 2015

Washington Post: A black college closed in 1955, but its fading alumni fight to pass on a legacy

We looked at an HBCU on the brink of potential closure and today another that didn't survive. In this case, this school left behind a significant legacy as far as its history and dwindling alumni:
Storer started as a primary school in 1865, weathering racist attacks because it dared educate African Americans.

It graduated its last class in 1955, six decades ago, but Storer’s dwindling alumni return, year after year. Their descendants who never attended the school keep returning, too, even as the National Park Service, which now owns the campus, is making efforts to highlight Storer’s history.

The alumni and their descendants believe it’s their responsibility to honor those who persevered before them.

“Blacks and whites sacrificed blood, sweat and tears to make things happen,” says David Vollin, a zoning engineer with the District’s Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs.

Born during Reconstruction, Storer survived violence and was the site of other historic moments, including contributing to the birth of the modern civil rights era. And mostly, it created a refuge for young men and women. It’s a source of pride.

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