From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

African American Schools - Catlettsburg Colored Common School District (Boyd County, KY)

The Catlettsburg Colored Common School District was established by the Kentucky General Assembly in 1873. The district included the area beginning at the Ohio River at the mouth of Horse Branch. There was a poll tax on every male 18 years old or older within the district as weel as widows with children. The tax was not to exceed $2. Students attending the school had to live in the specified district and be at least 5 years old and not over 25 years old.

In 1887, the school term was five months. An African American minister, the Reverend John R. Cox of the AME Church, was the first truant officer in Catlettsburg. Cox was a former slave born in Catlettsburg in 1852. The school district existed for 38 years before an act was established in 1912 to repeal the act that had established the Colored Common School District in Catlettsburg.

Four Colored families were counted in Catlettsburg in the 1910 U.S. Federal Census, most of whom did not have children. The number of children had more than doubled by 1920; Miss Agnes H. Lockwood was the school teacher in 1923; and in 1925, there was a school census of 20 school age children for the one colored school that had one teacher [sources: U.S. Federal Census; Proceedings of the Kentucky Negro Educational Association, April 18-21, 1923, p. 66;and Kentucky Public School Directory, 1925-1926, p. 69].

The Colored school district in Cattletsburg may have been discontinued, but the colored school of Catlettsburg operated as part of the Ashland Colored school system. In the 1937 Polk's Catlettsburg City Directory, Daisy Keeton is listed as principal of the Catlettsburg Colored School at 170 E. Panola Hill. The school was still listed in the directory as late as 1944.

For more see "Chapter 653" in the 1873 Acts Passed at the...session of the General Assembly for the Commonwealth, pp. 193-194 [full-text available at Google Books]; and Common School Laws of Kentucky: 1922, by the Kentucky Department of Education. See also the entries for African American Schools in the NKAA Database.

Kentucky County & Region

Read about Boyd County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Catlettsburg, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Item Relations

Cite This NKAA Entry:

“African American Schools - Catlettsburg Colored Common School District (Boyd County, KY),” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed May 28, 2024,

Last modified: 2020-09-09 18:15:42