Emanuel and Sarah Cole were paid eight dollars on August 2, 1878 by the School Directors of District #7, T4N,R11W for a corner of their property on which to construct a frame school for the black students in the neighborhood. Originally designated the “Cole” School it was usually referred to as the “colored school” in the language of the day.
Some of the early teachers were Sam VanCleave, Bennie Payne, Versie Anderson and George Kendall. In 1903, the Board employed Floyd Meeks as the teacher and paid him $30 a month.
Cole was not the only school designated for black children. Tilford Portee, a free black from Kentucky, received a US patent for 40 acres in 1852 and sold ½ acre to the Directors of School District #5, T4N,R11W for fifteen dollars on April 29,1879.
Both Cole and Portee schools were closed in the early 1900’s. Thereafter, black students were integrated into into Blackburn, East Pinkstaff, Glade, Waters, Pinkstaff, Fairview, Pleasant Ridge, Plank Road, Maple Grove, Pepple, Filmore, Lawrenceville and Bridgeport.