The Page Woodson History
Page Woodson School's history dates to the early 1900s, when the building opened as Lowell School. It was 1934 when the former all-white Lowell School was expanded and transformed into a home for the all-black Douglass High School.
The building was monumental in size and appearance, equipped with an indoor swimming pool, gymnasium, auditorium and stage. And unlike previous homes for Douglass High School, the building was in the middle of the black community—not hidden among industrial properties.
The school closed in 1993 as the neighborhood's population plunged. But the community was not ready to give up on the J. F. Kennedy neighborhood or the school. The Bradshaws hired Gina Sofola as their construction site representative and neighborhood liaison. Sofola returned to Oklahoma City in 2004 after spending 20 years in New York City and quickly got involved in a community outreach effort.
Marjorie Young, director of Oklahoma City Northeast, has overseen the northeast Oklahoma City Ambassadors Choir for the past 20 years, and has started planning on how best to connect the community to the school's auditorium. The auditorium is the most visible, but not the only effort
being made to reconnect the city's black community with the school.
Historical Page Woodson visitors included jazz great Duke Ellington, singer Marian Anderson and Thurgood Marshall, the country's first black Supreme Court justice.