Rosenwald Schools


Location: Throughout the Southern United States


Intent:  Between 1917 and 1932, Julius Rosenwald provided funding for over 5,000 schools for African-American children throughout the rural south and southwest, where segregation limited their access to equal education. Many schools were shuttered in the 1950s and 1960s. Over time, many of the buildings themselves were lost to development or decay. Beginning in the early 2000s, a growing awareness and appreciation of Rosenwald Schools led to a nationwide, grassroots campaign for their preservation. Many have been listed in state and national registers and restored to serve as schools, museums, and community centers. EHT Traceries was engaged to craft a historic context to frame an argument for a potential Rosenwald National Historical Park. Working in collaboration with the National Parks Conservation Association, the Rosenwald Park Campaign, and fourteen State Historic Preservation Offices, Traceries identified and collected information on extant Rosenwald  Schools that could become contributing properties to the national park. Collectively, these properties were evaluated against the test of suitability and feasibility for new NPS units.

Client:  National Parks Conservation Association

Scope:  Historic Context Study

Size:  Approximately 55 former school properties

Dates:  2018