History series to focus on Biloxi Public Schools Thursday

Visitors to this week’s installment of the Thursdays in May preservation series will get a look at the early days of public education in Biloxi, thanks to a group of students and researchers.

The free program, part of a month-long celebration of Biloxi’s colorful history, will begin at 5:30 p.m. at the Dukate Building, on Father Ryan Avenue, west of Biloxi Junior High School.

The program will be introduced by Superintendent Dr. Paul A. Tisdale and will include two segments:

— “Great Educators Of Biloxi Schools Remembered–A Retrospective Reenactment” where students will dress in period costumes to portray some of Biloxi’s education leaders. Adam Dunnells will portray William Gorenflo, Carlton Warnberg will portray William Dukate, Corey Gaspard will portray Lazaro Lopez, Michaela Moore will portray Mary L. Michel, and Kaitlyn Greer will portray Fannie Nichols.

— “A Tribute to Biloxi High Class of 1913 – 1914,” a segment in which the staff of the Biloxi Local History and Genealogy Library will trace the paths of sixth grade students from Central Junior High in 1908-09. That year, the students took part in a year-long endeavor that resulted in the compilation of a nearly 50-page scrapbook.

Chartwells, the firm that operates the school district’s cafeteria service, will sponsor a reception after the program. Also, about 100 sets of the history of Biloxi Public Schools will be given away to those attending.

The Thursdays in May series, part of Biloxi’s celebration of national preservation month, is coordinated by the city of Biloxi, Biloxi Public Schools, and the Biloxi Local History & Genealogy Library. This week’s program has been organized by Lee Ann Dubaz, historian of the Biloxi Public Schools.

Photos, Part 1: To see photos from last week’s program at Beavuoir, click here.

Photos, Part 2: Biloxi High School’s jazz band was involved in the launch of the preservation series, a salute to Keesler and Biloxi’s military history, at Guice and Glennan parks near the Biloxi Small Craft Harbor. To see photos from that event, on May 5, click here.