T. Harry Williams Center for Oral History Collection
INTERVIEWEE NAME: John Brother Cade, Junior COLLECTION: 4700.0643
IDENTIFICATION: Teacher at McKinley High School 1961-1964, graduate of Southern
University Laboratory High School and Southern University.
INTERVIEWER: Shawnda Hollins and Carmen Posey
PROJECT: McKinley 1: History of McKinley High School
INTERVIEW DATES: July 12, 1995
FOCUS DATES: 1950s – 1990s
Tape 933, Side A
Born on the campus of Prairie View A&M University, Texas, to John B. Cade, Senior and Jessie Mae Maben Cade; both parents had Master’s degrees; attended Southern University Laboratory High School; taught at McKinley 1961-1964; first day of school the building flooded; daily routine as a teacher, opening classroom before school to allow students to finish homework; students were involved in learning; afternoon activities and sports; many outstanding football and basketball players; taught Don Chaney who later played for Boston Celtics and coached Houston Rockets; activities mostly held at the school until integration; McKinley was a community, everyone knew each other; he was “put out of Southern” University; father sent him to Chicago to visit his uncle and cousins, soon found out that he was sent there to work under his uncle in Argo Cornstarch Products seed and feed plant; spent the summer of 1952 loading railroad cars with sacks of feed and, “when I got back, I did not get put out of school no more”; thinks some schools are too focused on athletics, academics should be the goal; clubs at McKinley; friend Howard Lewis; McKinley students were studious, tended to do well in school because parents owned homes in the neighborhood; memorable and funny moments; inspired by his father, mother, sister, Charlie Keel, Dr. Wilcox, and Reverend Richard Calvin; as a homeroom teacher he visited the homes of his students; hand-delivered report cards and built partnerships with parents; many of his students excelled because their parents were involved; sister had a Master’s by age nineteen, his teachers would ask him to be like her; wasn’t very rebellious because he feared his parent’s discipline; friendship with former McKinley principal Charles Thomas; discussion of students who attend school outside of their communities, negative effect on their attitude toward school; would work at McKinley again; McKinley is still a good school, people who come back to attend activities and sports prove the value of the school; advice to aspiring graduates to keep going forward, don’t be swayed to do wrong; McKinley graduates have been successful in all aspects of government and society.
TAPES: 1 (T933) TOTAL PLAYING TIME: 32 minutes
# PAGES TRANSCRIPT: 20
OTHER MATERIALS: Interviewer’s notes/word list, Correspondence, Additional information (3 pages)