February 28, 2012

El Centro’s Segregated Schools

Multimedia producer Laura Gonzalez has written a fantastic article about El Centro’s Washington Elementary School and Douglass High School. In her Imperia Valley Press article titled “Teachers Offered Love and Compassion during Segregation.” Gonzalez interviewed former students like El Centro fire department battalion chief Albert Newton and El Centro mayor Sedalia Sanders. Mayor Sanders told Gonzalez “that many people assume the school is named after President George Washington”, when it is really named after Booker T. Washington.

According to Gonzalez’s article “African American student didn’t have a place to go after graduating from Washington School. At the time, Central High School didn’t allow blacks into the school. This situation encouraged Payne to create Douglass High School.” The Payne she is referring to is Professor William Payne, the same Professor William Payne that helped form the California Colony and Home Protection Association with Colonel Allensworth. Professor Payne taught school in Allensworth from 1909 to 1919; then left to become the principal of Eastside Elementary School in El Centro.

Stephen Hill, Sr.

February 19, 2012

Chapter Founder Honored

Frances Jackson, Wilma Lovelace, and Derrick Luckett
The San Diego Realtist for Democracy in Housing (the San Diego chapter of the National Association of Real Estate Brokers) hosted the San Diego African-American Trailblazers of the Real Estate Industry at their February 16th breakfast meeting. Parnell Lovelace, the founder of the San Diego Chapter of the Friends of Allensworth received a posthumous award for community serve. His Wife Wilma Lovelace accepted the award for Mr. Lovelace who died last year at the age of 80. Also honored at the event was Colonel Allensworth.

According to their web site “the National Association of Real Estate Brokers was formed in 1947 by African American real estate professionals out of a need to secure the right to equal housing opportunities, regardless of race, creed, or color.”

Stephen Hill, Sr.

February 10, 2012

Allensworth Renaissance Literary Festival

Join the Friends of Allensworth and the California Department of Parks and Recreation as we celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Allensworth schoolhouse. The two room school was built with funds from a $14,950 bond issued by the town residents. The school taught kindergarten through eighth grade and averaged thirty students per year. There were two teachers, one paid by the state and one paid from an education tax that the residents imposed on themselves.

The new school promptly became the nucleus of the community life. Community groups like the Women’s Improvement Association and the Allensworth Board of Trade met at the school. During the holidays the community came together at the school for special events. The school also served as the polling place during elections and doubled as the town’s courthouse.

We are commemorating the school’s 100th anniversary with a renaissance literary festival. The day’s entertainment will include one act plays and professional storytellers. Authors will be on hand to autograph and discuss their books. As always our friendly docents will be there to greet you at the park’s historic homes and businesses.

For more information contact Friends of Allensworth President Thomas Stratton at (530) 949-2168 or tomten@pacbell.net

What: Allensworth Renaissance Literary Festival

When: Saturday, February 25th
           10:00 am to 4:00 pm

Where: Colonel Allensworth State Historic Park

Cost: $8.00 per car

Stephen Hill, Sr.

February 04, 2012

Chapter Vice President Honored

Frances K. Jackson, vice president of the San Diego chapter of the Friends of Allensworth, to receive the George L. Stevens Community Service Award. The award will be presented at the Fourth District Seniors Resource Center’s Gems & Jewels event on Friday, February 10, 2012.

Mrs. Jackson has been a vanguard of the San Diego Real Estate industry for over 45 years. She was the founder of San Diego County’s first black owned real estate appraisal firm. During her 27 years as an adjunct professor for the San Diego Community College District she has trained over 5,000 students and helped develop real estate curriculum for several colleges and trade associations. She has actively encouraged legislative initiatives and laws that insure the availability of affordable housing and equal credit for minorities.

Mrs. Jackson currently serves as the education chairperson and a board member for NAREB (National Association of Real Estate Brokers) San Diego Realtists for Democracy in Housing. She is also the CEO and owner of Nefran Real Estate/Ameriwest Mortgage.

The community service awards will be presented at the Gems & Jewels event on Friday, February 10, 2012, 6 to 9 pm at the George L. Stevens Senior Center, 570 South 65th Street, San Diego. Tickets are $35.

For tickets and information contact Ida Ford at (619) 266-2066 or fdsrc@sbcglobal.net.

Stephen Hill, Sr.