Dunbar School – Atoka

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Address:  Dunbar and High Streets, Atoka, Oklahoma 040, Atoka County 005 County:  Atoka
Started:   Completed:  1939

Current Usage:

Description:

A four room building, the Atoka Dunbar school is a single story, rectangular (71′ x 52′) structure constructed of untooled and uncoursed native sandstone. Masonry is rather crude. The roof, now covered with composition materials, is gabled, and entryways are recessed and covered by porches. Reaching to the eaves, window openings with preformed concrete sills, have been enclosed with concrete block inserts. The latter alteration, however, has not permanently impaired the architectural integrity of the building.
The Dunbar school was the black school prior to integration in Atoka. WPA laborers who worked on it were also black. Thus the school building is significant because construction of it provided work opportunities for unskilled and unemployed black laborers made destitute by the depression and because it created a new environment conducive to learning for black students previously deprived educationally. Indeed, the first decent school facilities for blacks in southeastern Oklahoma, and Atoka in particular, date from the late 1930s. As a WPA school building in an urban area, it is notable for its modest scale. To the community it is unique architecturally because of its type (black school), style, materials and workmanship.

VERBAL BOUNDARY DESCRIPTION: From the intersection of High and Dunbar streets go 125 feet east, 150 feet north, 125 feet west, and 150 feet to the point of beginning, all in Block 2, Highland Addition to Atoka original.

Sources:

  1. Oklahoma Landmarks Inventory Nomination

Supported Documents:

  1. WPA Properties Atoka County – Dunbar County

Photos: