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Garnet-Patterson Junior High School 2001 10th Street, NW

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The first school on this site was erected in 1880; the current building was dedicated in 1929, combining two adjacent schools, Garnet and Patterson, and retaining both names.  The new building opened with a five-day celebration including speeches, receptions, physical education demonstrations, pageants, and concerts.  The auditorium, opening on Vermont Avenue, was designed with its own entrance to accommodate community use.

The school was named for Henry Highland Garnet (1815-1882), an orator and abolitionist (later named consul general to Liberia), and for James Patterson (1823-1893), the Congressman who prepared the law establishing African American schools in D.C.

When the Metro line was extended into the neighborhood in the 1980s, structural damage to the school forced the destruction of the gym and several classrooms.  For five years, one side of the building was propped up with metal beams.  In 1993, Metro financed a replacement gym.

Notable graduates include: jazz musician Billy Taylor, D.C. Congressional Delegate Walter Fauntroy, and singers Marvin Gaye, and Pearl Bailey.  The school is still in use, now serving as a Middle School.  In 2009, it celebrated its 80th anniversary.