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Endangered Properties Preservation

Abandoned: W. E. B. Dubois School, Wake Forest, NC.

July 30, 2019

Several years ago I stopped by the W. E. B. Dubois School in Wake Forest, North Carolina, hoping to get close enough to get interior pictures.

As you can see from my pictures, the structures are in great disrepair. Awhile ago a group was formed, The Dubois Alumni Association, and they were working to restore some of the buildings and clean them up. I am not sure of the status of their efforts.

It’s been awhile since I have been by and I am not sure of the current status of the buildings. The day I was there, two members of that association were on the grounds. They very nicely gave me access to photograph the interior of some buildings.

The W. E. B. Dubois School was also called the Wake Forest Graded School (colored), Wake Forest Colored High School, and later Wake Forest Rolesville Middle School. This was historically a Rosenwald School. These schools were founded by Julius Rosenwald, African American leader, educator and philanthropist. He was also part owner and president of Sears, Roebuck and Company.

The elementary school was built in 1926. The high school was built in 1939.

Another building, the agriculture building/shop was brought to the site in 1942.

When desegregation started, the school became the Wake Forest-Rolesville Middle School. When I first posted these pictures on Facebook a few years ago, I started to hear from many students that attended the school during segregation and after segregation. All of them had very fond memories of the school.

The doors were closed in 1989 as a newer building was constructed for the middle school. It then quickly fell into disrepair. I will try to drive by one day this week to see if the buildings have changed much.

If you attended this school, let us know!