The Edgar M. Gregory School served as the first public school for African Americans in Houston. Located in the city’s National Register-listed Freedmen’s Town Historic District, the building is now part of the Houston Public Library system. It was named after a Union army officer and assistant commissioner of the Freedman’s Bureau in Texas.
The African American Library at the Gregory School offers permanent exhibits and archives featuring photos, documents and recording focusing on the lives of blacks in the historic Fourth Ward neighborhood. This area of the city, part of the Fourth Ward, served as a cultural center for African Americans. In 1870, several Freedman’s Bureau schools were consolidated at the Gregory School, which became the wood-frame Gregory Institute that was eventually replaced by the current two-story brick building in 1926. A 2009 rehabilitation included an oral history recording studio, reading rooms and space for visiting scholars.
African American Library at the Gregory School