First woman President of NAACP got her start in Denton

The first woman president of the NAACP, Dr. Enolia P. McMillan, started her professional career as a teacher in Caroline County in 1927, when she taught at the Denton segregated black high school.  The following year, she served as a school principal in Charles County.  She moved on to Columbia University, where she obtained her master’s degree in education in 1933.  Her master’s thesis, Some Factors Affecting Secondary Education for Negroes in Maryland Counties (Excluding Baltimore), attacked Maryland’s racist dual school system in the 1930s.

With the Rev. John Wright marching to Ocean City’s Boardwalk in 1986

 

After the 1954 Supreme Court ruling outlawing segregated public schools, McMillan was one of the first black teachers at a white school.  She retired from teaching in 1968 and was elected president of the Baltimore NAACP in 1969.  She was elected as the first woman president of the NAACP in 1984 and served until 1990.  Dr. McMillan died in 2006 at age 102.   (Wikipedia)

Exploring Dr. McMillan’s Caroline County Experience

The Wikipedia article cites a Baltimore Sun article for the reference to Dr. McMillan teaching in Denton in Caroline County.  The source for that fact is apparently Dr. McMillan’s granddaughter, Dr. Tiffany Beth McMillan Mfume.  (The  Wikipedia article  unfortunately links to the high school in Denton, Texas, not Caroline County. )

Enolia P. McMillan, July 1985

 

Surprisingly, I have been unable so far to determine the precise location of the segregated black Denton high school in 1927.  Denton High was listed as one of the black schools reporting attendance in the Denton Journal in 1928.  The segregated black Denton Elementary location is pinpointed in the Helicopter Flyover of the historic sites of segregated black schools in Caroline County.  Denton High’s location and history might be traced through the current Lockerman Middle School.  I’m still researching this.  Let me know what information you may have.

Denton Journal 20 Oct 1928. School attendance.
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