Little Rock Central High School
A visit to the Little Rock Central High School will leave an indelible impression. A colossal Gothic Revival structure, it was dubbed “the most beautiful high school building in America” when it was built in 1927. Thirty years later it became embroiled in a civil rights battle when nine African-American students, now known as the Little Rock Nine, fought to enroll in the (then) all-white Central High. After a bitter fight, the students entered the school under military escort. The first real application of Brown v. the Board of Education (1954), their courageous actions paved the way for the desegregation of America’s public schools.
Inscribed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1977, Little Rock Central High School was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1982 and is still an operational high school today. Tours inside of the school are only offered when school is in session, but you can walk around the exterior at any time and the displays and videos in the visitors center are both informative and deeply moving. Also part of this National Park site is the restored Magnolia Mobil Service Station that was built around the same time as the high school.
Visit Little Rock Central High School
2120 W. Daisy Gatson Bates Drive
Little Rock, Arkansas, 72202
Visitors Center 0pen daily 9:00 am. – 4:30 pm.
Guided tours of the Little Rock High School are offered on a limited basis and by reservation only. More info here.
Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site
Little Rock Central High School was listed on the National Register of Historic Places, 1977
Little Rock Central High School was designated a National Historic Landmark, 1982
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Daisy Bates: Civil Rights Crusader from Arkansas
BREAKING THE SILENCE: The Little Rock Women’s Emergency Committee to Open Our Schools, 1958-1963
Central in Our Lives: Voices from Little Rock Central High School 1957-1959
Warriors Don’t Cry: A Searing Memoir of the Battle to Integrate Little Rock’s Central High
The Story of the Little Rock Nine and School Desegregation in Photographs
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