Wiley College In Marshall, TX Receives $500K Grant To Use Towards Preservation Project
Exciting News For One Of Our East Texas HBCU's!
Since the 1990s, the National Park Service has awarded over $60 million in grants to over 80 of the remaining active Historically Black Colleges and Universities. This grant program was established to identify and restore historic structures on Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs) campuses considered to be the most historically significant and physically threatened. These grants work to preserve the historic structures on HBCU campuses, many of which are listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
Wiley College is one of fourteen HBCUs to be awarded a $500,000 grant to preserve and restore historic buildings, structures, and landmarks.
The former Pemberton High School served as the only high school for Blacks in Marshall, TX, prior to the desegregation of public school in the 1970s. The building is located on the Wiley College campus. It is named after the first graduate of Wiley College, H.B. Pemberton Sr., who was instrumental in obtaining education for Blacks in Marshall.
In 1894, H.B. Pemberton Sr. began petitioning the city of Marshall for Black access to education. His advocacy and fundraising efforts established Marshall’s first African American Public School. In 1925, H.B. Pemberton Sr. petitioned for a new school because of outgrowth at the segregated school. That same year, the school site was purchased and would remain the home of the school until its closure in the 1970s.
In 1941, through petition, the school board unanimously accepted the petition to change the name of the school to the H.B. Pemberton High School in honor of its founder.
The grant will support the final phase of the Wiley College project to preserve Pemberton for continued use.
The Wiley College Preservation Project: Strengthening the Legacy is scheduled to be completed by March 2024 according to a press release from the school. Congrats to the staff and students!