J.L. Long Middle School is one of the neighborhoods International Baccalaureate campuses
John Lawrence Long is the namesake of one of our neighborhood schools, J.L. Long Middle School.
He’s featured in a 1909 book called A History of Greater Dallas and Vicinity by Philip Lindsley and Luther B. Hill. The book has short biographies of some of the most prominent people in Dallas history.
Long was born and grew up in Newberry, South Carolina, and he also attended Newberry College. Afterward, he went to the Peabody College for Teachers in Nashville, Tennessee, and graduated in 1882.
Then he began a decades-long career in education.
Long moved to Texas and taught math for four years at Summer Hill Select School in Omen, which is near Tyler in East Texas. After that, he moved to Galveston to become principal of the Rosenberg school, and he stayed at that position for over six years.
He came to Dallas in 1893 and became the superintendent of public schools, a job he had for 15 years. Long resigned in 1908.
“Under professor Long’s able and efficient management the Dallas public school system was advanced to its present high standard, his work keeping pace with the growth of the city, which more than doubled in population during his service in that office,” the authors write. “He is known as a man of energy and continued accomplishments.”
After resigning, Long took a job as secretary of the Southern Publishing Co., which published textbooks.
Long married Laura Matthews in Smith County, Texas, and had two children, Hazel and Lawson. Long was also a member of the Knights of Pythias and Grace Methodist Church.
He died in 1933, the same year J.L. Long Junior High School opened.
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Renee is an editor at the Advocate.