Each year, alumni and friends of the Second Ward High School National Alumni Foundation gather for the Annual Meeting and Reunion, three days of remembering and celebration. In 2010, we marked the 30th Anniversary of the founding of the Second Ward High School National Alumni Foundation. Please visit the Second Ward Foundation photostream to see the alumni sharing in their respective celebrations.
A special part of that anniversary began with a marker ceremony and continued in the old Second Ward gym with a program demonstrating the Foundation’s work to preserve and share this community’s African-American history and heritage.
The Second Ward Foundation Through Your Lens
Alumni and friends have shared their photos of the special celebration and reunion events. Thanks to alumni and to Leon Gill, class of 1965, for sharing your photos.
Second Ward High School was opened in 1923 in Charlotte, North Carolina as the city's first high school for African American children. The school was closed in 1969 and torn down during urban renewal.
Since 1980, the Foundation has continued the school's mission of education and community involvement by the school's alumni and friends. Part of the Foundation's Annual Meeting and Reunion is the Marker Ceremony.
Alumni and friends can view photos from past reunions and history exhibits on flickr.
The Reunion Committee and Delores Giles, Chair
Dear SWHS Alumni, Family and Friends:
Do you remember singing,
“Give me that old Second Ward Spirit”, “Give me that old Second Ward Spirit”, “Give me that old Second Ward Spirit”; it’s good enough for me. When the band started up, we sang this at pep rallies and football and basketball games whether we were behind or ahead in the game. We were the Second Ward family.
As we reminisce on the past, think back to the special times we had at our dear alma mater: writing our Junior Declamation Speech in our junior year; being afraid to cut Miss Mattie Hall’s English class; sneaking off campus to go to the store; what you were going to wear to the Queen City Classic; cramming for that math or social studies test, etc. I am sure by now you have thought of more adventures you shared with classmates and friends while attending Second Ward High. Wouldn’t it be fun to see all of your old friends, former classmates and even some teachers again in a few weeks? Classes in reunion this year are: 1934, 1944, 1954 and 1964 (Golden Anniversary).
A 1964 graduate, Phyllis Baxter celebrates during a Marker Ceremony.
We have planned a great weekend for everyone. Our 3rd annual Golf Tournament will be held on Friday, August 29 at the Renaissance Golf Course. On Friday night we will celebrate with old school music, table games, videos, exhibits, and a Card Game Tournament that is sure to be as competitive as the Queen City Classic. You don’t want to miss this! Saturday morning our annual meeting will convene. We have a lot going on and valuable information will be shared and presented at this meeting.
We will visit the Marker and walk the pathway to our future, “The Gym Project”. Also, don’t forget to dress in your best blue and white outfit for Saturday night as we dance the night away with classmates and friends. Sunday morning, we will worship with St. Paul Baptist Church and conclude with the Awards Banquet on Sunday night.
Please click on the links below to see the schedule, registration and a complete list of all of the festivities planned.
Here are links detailing the 2014 Reunion Events:
Since the organization of the Foundation in 1980, one of our missions has been to be a resource to the community to our partners and to individuals looking to find people, stories, images and information.
We have developed our collections from numerous donations and projects. But we are more than an archive. Working with colleagues and volunteers from the Foundation, we have created museum exhibits, books, interactive media, a documentary film, special events and on-camera interviews with Charlotte black leaders.
For several decades we have served as a resource to conserve and preserve the images of our community. Our mission grew out of the educational endeavors of the teachers at Second Ward – to document and educate all citizens.
The documentary, A Colored School, features remarkable 1941 film footage from a day at the school and surrounding neighborhood. View stories about the film at UNC-TV.
The May Queen, Margaret Alexander, pictured above and is one of the students shown in 1941 and on-camera today.
The Second Ward Foundation's traveling exhibit is available for events
We are a volunteer organization and our many projects have been made possible through the work of our volunteers, contributions from alumni and friends and from grants and awards from the following:
The Arts & Science Council of Charlotte has awarded operating and special project grants; The Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation has helped us document and preserve important histories; and The Good Samaritan Fund of the Episcopal Church has supported our work on the James Peeler photo archive.
Alumni and citizens can visit the House/Museum to see memorabilia from the high school and exhibits on the Second Ward neighborhood and other Charlotte neighborhoods that were home to the black community.
Groups or individual may make appointments to visit or use the Foundation House at 1905 Beatties Ford Road in west Charlottte near the intersection of LaSalle Street.
We are an all volunteer organization and do not have regular museum hours. But please call us at 704.398.9333 to arrange a visit.
All rights reserved. Second Ward High School National Alumni Foundation, Inc.
The Foundation is an associate member of the Arts & Science Council of Charlotte-Mecklenburg.