Brooksville

Located in Pottawatomie County near Tecumseh, Oklahoma, Brooksville was established in 1903. Originally the town was named Sewell, after a white doctor who owned surrounding land. In 1912 the name changed to Brooksville in honor of the first African-American in the area, A. R. Brooks, a cotton buyer and farmer. His son, W. M. Brooks, became the first postmaster.

In 1906, Rev. Jedson White organized the local St. John’s Baptist Church. Soon afterward, the congregation built a church that still exists. White also promoted the town throughout the South, urging African-Americans to settle in Brooksville.

In 1924, with the aid of the Rosenwald Fund, a new school was built. Banneker School was a rock building of four large rooms, a three-hundred-seat auditorium, a small library, and a well-equipped domestic science room. George W. McLaurin, the first African American graduate student at the University of Oklahoma, taught at the school.

brooksville