A.T. Johnson salutes Ralph Bunche
by Marian Veney Ashton
Director of A. T. Johnson High School Museum
Each April and May from the 1950s to 1968, students from Ralph Bunche and A. T. Johnson High Schools would meet to challenge the other to a spirited game of baseball. Often time, Ralph Bunche was the victor. Last Saturday, May 18th, board members of the A. T. Johnson High School Museum traveled to the old Ralph Bunche High School to salute the Ralph Bunche Alumni in a dedication program for the placement of the road marker cementing the school and its history in Virginia’s history. The road marker reads:
Ralph Bunche High School was built as a direct result of the Federal District Court case Margaret Smith et al. v. School Board of King George County, Virginia, which was filed in 1947. The judge ruled that jurisdictions should ensure the “equalization” of segregated school facilities for whites and African Americans. White segregationists hoped to avoid integration by constructing “separate but equal” facilities, but the NAACP quickly moved on to demanding the end of segregation altogether. Named after the noted political scientist and diplomat, Ralph Bunche High School opened in 1949 and closed in 1968 after the county desegregated its schools.