The Spirit of Concord's Logan High School Lives On
by: Denise McLain 7/13/15 | Cabarrus County History Blog
Barber-Scotia College has been the matriarch of Downtown Concord NC and the Logan Community for 150 years. The College will continuously strive to build stong relationships and partnerships with the residents, businesses and government offices inside the community
The year 1891 marked the establishment of Concord city schools. It was also the year in which a young minister by the Reverend Frank T. Logan was appointed the founder and first principal of Logan School, which was established for African American children. Although a minister, Reverend Logan was of the conviction that intellectual emancipation was a necessary component to abundant life, as well as spiritual salvation.
By 1924, the school’s two original wooden structures, located in separate sections of the city, had given way to the new Logan Grammar School; a modern brick building with 10 classrooms, a spacious auditorium and a number of other modern conveniences. The faculty had increased from 4 teachers to 9 and the student body increased to nearly 400. That same year, high school courses were offered for the first time. Logan was chartered and became Logan High School in 1925. Five years later, the high school was added to the state accredited list with an 11-B rating. Reverend Logan retired in 1932.
Over the years the school grew, enrollment grew, and curriculum was expanded. There was daily bus service. A gymnasium and other buildings were added, and it achieved a 1-A rating. Logan developed a two-track curriculum, general and vocational, and invested in the sciences and fine arts. An audio/visual education program to supplement class room instruction was added. Students were also given an opportunity to develop their talents through more than a dozen extra-curricular activities. In 1960, Logan High School became a full member of The Southern Association of College and Secondary Schools.
Despite a strong reaction to the court-ordered closing of Concord’s Logan High School, the Tuesday, August 6, 1968 edition of The Concord Tribune reported the resolution a major victory for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in its four-year battle for complete desegregation of city schools. Following a recent Supreme Court decision requiring southern school districts to adopt desegregation plans, the Salisbury Middle District Court ordered the transfer of some 200 high school students from predominantly African American Logan High School to the predominantly white Concord High School. For the families of Logan, it was the end of an era for a school which bore the name of a respected leader in Concord’s African American Community.
After desegregation, an effort was made to preserve the facility, but the project proved impractical. A number of the buildings were demolished in the 1980s, but the school’s gymnasium was remodeled and is now used as a recreation and daycare center by the City of Concord. Inside, you will find a monument which looks like an open book on a podium. It is adorned by three pictures: a house, symbolizing home economics; a basketball for athletics; and a music book, for the band and chorus. Included are the names and tenures of the past principals. A granite wall behind the podium honors former students, teachers and administrators. Although it honors those of the past, the hope is that it will inspire the future. As 1942 graduate Robert White explained at the 1991 unveiling of the monument [Logan], “has helped so many students, and despite all the struggles and injustices, many of the students have gone higher.”
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Photos: Concord Library Lore Local History Room files. Top: Rev. Frank T. Logan, first principal of Logan High School. Above: Student at Logan High School attending a May Day event in 1943.