Tulsa's Booker T. Washington High School celebrating 100-year anniversary, 40 years of desegregation

TULSA - All year, Booker T. Washington High School will celebrate its 100-year anniversary.

The school, which first opened as an all-black institution in 1913, had just four rooms and three students and was located on Easton Street, according to assistant principal Michael Mims.

Booker T. holds a special place in Mims' heart. He's worked at the school in some capacity for 20 years. He's also one of three generations of Mimses to graduate from the school.

Booker T. Washington will celebrate another milestone Tuesday. The school will commemorate the 40th anniversary of its desegregation. Mims says Booker T. served as a pilot school for the desegregation of Tulsa Public Schools. He can still recall the mood in 1973.

"I'm sure at that time there were a bunch of afraid kids that came over with the myths that were talked about in north Tulsa, but at the same time we teachers banded together and made it a very easy transition," he said.

On Friday, students will hear from speakers about what life was like during the desegregation of Booker T. Washington High School.

"It was a great event. Forty years later I can see where it's been a tremendous success," Mims said.

Recent recognition for the high school includes being named a top 50 school in the nation and Oklahoma's best public high school. 

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