City Directories and History: Dennis High School, constructed in 1936, is significant for its importance in the education of African-Americans in Bishopville and Lee County and for its representation of the inequalities of South Carolina’s “separate but equal” educational system. In addition, the renovation of Dennis High School in 1954 is an excellent example of the state’s efforts to change these perceptions during the “Brown vs. Board of Education” era. In 1936, two new schools were constructed in Bishopville. Bishopville High School was built for the white students at a cost of about $71,000 and was designed by noted architect Henry Dudley Harrall. Dennis High School was constructed by Edgeworth and McBride Contractors of Cheraw for Bishopville’s black students. It was built at a cost of $17,500 on land donated by local philanthropist Rebecca Dennis. The similarities between the design of the two schools suggest that Harrall had some hand in the design of Dennis High School also. The original Classical Revival style school building is an L-shaped, one-story, load-bearing red brick structure that rests on a masonry foundation. Recessed symmetrical wings flank the main block. A third wing, which gave the building its original L-shape, houses the auditorium. In 1954, a single classroom addition was built on the northern end of the rear elevation. Listed in the National Register January 26, 2005.
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