Birmingham High School
Birmingham High School, later known as Central High School, was the sole dedicated high school operated by Birmingham City Schools prior to the opening of Parker High School in 1900, and the only high school for white students until Ensley High School was annexed into Birmingham in 1910.
In 1883 the high school students were moved to leased rooms in the Wright Building on the northeast corner of 19th Street and 3rd Avenue North. The presence of a steam laundry on the first floor of that building proved detrimental to study. In 1890 the entire Enslen Building at 608 21st Street North (the present site of the Tutwiler Hotel) was leased to the school board. That building served the school until a new building was finally completed in 1906.
The first dedicated building for a Birmingham High School was built for $160,000 on the site of Terry's home at 2316 7th Avenue North. Other properties on the same block were acquired by the city and were sold for salvage value before the site was cleared.
The firm of Breeding & Whilldin, hired to design the school building, offered the board a choice between re-grading the hill on which Terry's home had stood to reduce the number of steps needed, or to set the main floor three feet above the corner of 7th Avenue and 24th Street. The board chose no to re-grade, "so as not to mar the beauty of the elevated site." At the same meeting, a motion to choose a new name for the school failed, and the name "Birmingham High School" was kept.
Central High School burned to the ground on February 12, 1918. Students attended classes at the Paul Hayne School and the Medical College of Alabama until a new high school could be completed. In 1923 Central High School was replaced by Phillips High School, named for John H. Phillips, superintendent of Birmingham schools from 1883 to 1921.
- E. C. Wingfield, 1883–
- George Brewer, –1887
- N. D. Van Syckel, 1887
- O. F. Barth, 1888
- W. K. Brown, 1889–1891
- A. C. Moore, 1891–1899
- J. B. Cunningham, 1889–1907
- Charles Brown, 1907–1921
- Clarence Going, 1921–1923
- "Names Selected for New Schools" (November 8, 1904) The Birmingham News, p. 8
- "Fumes, Not the Crowds, Used to Bother Students" (May 28, 1958) Birmingham Post-Herald - via Birmingham Public Library Digital Collections
- White, Marjorie Longenecker (1977) Downtown Birmingham: Architectural and Historical Walking Tour Guide. Birmingham: Birmingham Historical Society.
- Central High School at Postcard Birmingham
- Central High School football history, combined with Phillips history from ahsfhs.org website