Map of the District of Columbia Showing Location of Schools

The D.C. school system about halfway through its century of segregation.

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“The wisdom of Congress in placing both white and colored schools under one superintendent, and thus assuring both an equality in every department of school administration, has been fully vindicated by the excellent results which have followed.” [pg 13]

“Every American boy is a patriot. It is doubtful whether any generation will pass without its war. Non has yet passed free from war since the foundation of the Republic.” [pg. 22]

“It should further be considered that each year the normal school accepts 50 (white) members to be given professional training…” [pg. 170]

Between 1862, when the first school for African-American children opened, and 1954, when a pair of Supreme Court decisions overturned the policy nationwide, the public school system in Washington, D.C. were entirely segregated between black and white students. This map of the U.S. capital was lithographed by the Norris-Peters Company and published by the Government Printing Office in 1901 to accompany the Report of the Board of Education of the Commissioners of the District of Columbia.

The 177-page report, of which several excerpts can be read above, provides a spectacularly detailed overview of the D.C. school system at the turn of the century. Entries include tables of statistics, budgetary data, demographic information, submissions from school administrators, and course summaries. Particular emphasis is given to physical education, the involvement of students in the recent war with Spain, hygienic standards, and the recent re-organization of the school board.

The accompanying map shows the names and locations of schools throughout the District of Columbia. White and Colored Schools are noted in solid red and blue, respectively, with vacant or unoccupied lots identified with empty boxes. The distribution patterns of each are interesting; showing concentrations in particular neighborhoods and far more white schools.

Sources: Landscape of Diversity in DC Public Schools; 1915  Map of DC Segregated Schools;

Map Details

Publication Date: 1901

Author: Board of Education of the District of Columbia

Sheet Width (in): 28.75

Sheet Height (in): 

Condition: A

Condition Description: Folding map and accompanying text rescued from a busted set of Congressional Reports. 177 pp. report is complete and separated from original binding, but remains attached along the spine. The map shows creasing along fold lines and faint wear along the outer edges. Near fine overall.

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