On Saturday, February 1, at 10:30 a.m. the Delaware Public Archives will commemorate African American History Month with a special program led by Dr. Donald Blakey. In 1953, Dr. Jerome H. Holland was hired as the new President of Delaware State College. Dr. Holland had three sources of student recruitment – out of state, Wilmington’s Howard High School and Delaware State College’s High School. Coming to the rescue of the struggling college were many of the graduates of the newly formed county comprehensive high schools for African Americans and Native Americans. These schools were William. C. Jason (Sussex County), William H. Henry (Kent County) and Louis L. Redding (New Castle County). The graduates of these schools provided a continuous and highly important flow of student traffic to sustain the important efforts set in motion for Delaware State College by Dr. Holland. The intent of this program is to interact with former students of the schools in order to explore and capture valued experience gained within their home institutions and Delaware State College. These recorded memories will provide a permanent record to be available to current and future scholars.
A native of Washington D.C., Dr. Donald Blakey has been an active member of the Dover area community for many years. After graduating from Delaware State College in 1958, Blakey went on to earn his master’s degree and eventually his Doctorate. He served as a Physical Education Instructor & a Baseball Coach at Delaware State College before joining the Caesar Rodney School District as Assistant Principal at the High School and Director of Pupil Transportation for the District. An aviation enthusiast, he was a FAA certified commercial, instrument, multi-engine rated pilot who flew with Dover Air Trans, Inc. For more than 25 years Blakey served his community as a member of Kent County Levy Court and the State House of Representatives. He currently works as the Director and principal writer for DonDel Theater Co. in Dover.
The program is free to the public and will last approximately one hour. No reservations are required. For more information, contact Tom Summers (302) 744-5047 or e-mail [email protected].