The Way It Was


Published:

Photograph Courtesy of the Burton Historical Collection, Detroit Public Library

1907Eastern High School, which stood at the intersection of Mack Avenue and East Grand Boulevard, was long renowned as a producer of top sports teams, particularly in the 1950s and ’60s. It was built in 1901 and demolished in 1982. However, it also emphasized erudition, as exemplified in this early shot of Eastern’s Honors Class students, along with a few of their teachers. These young scholars from 110 years ago have passed on, but one wants to believe that they made their mark in the world. Even 20 years later, they must have been proud of the sentiments expressed in a poem included in Eastern’s 1927 yearbook: Oh Eastern High, Dear Eastern High/Our praise to thee we’ll give;/And spread thy teachings far and near,/To make thy standards live. A few illustrious Eastern grads include Detroit Mayor Coleman A. Young (1935); Detroit Piston Reggie Harding (1961); baseball great Joe Altobelli (1950); community and business leader Ed Deeb (1954); and boxing titan Emanuel Steward (1962). In 1967, Eastern moved to a new building on East Lafayette and Mount Elliott, near Elmwood Cemetery. A year later Eastern was renamed Martin Luther King Jr. Senior High School, after the civil rights leader was assassinated in April 1968. The mascot name was also then changed from the Indians to the Crusaders. But the idea was not to erase the memory of Eastern High. In 2012, a wing of MLK High School was dedicated to Eastern, with members of Eastern’s alumni association in attendance. The proud alumni also posted a granite memorial at the site of their old high school in 2010, which reads: “This is the site of Eastern High School, 1901-1966, and remembered with affection by more than three generations of alumni.” 

 

Edit Module
Edit Module Edit ModuleShow Tags

Archive »Related Content

An Hour with ... Ryan Abney

Event manager, Belle Isle Boat House

A Look at the Inexplicable Exclusion of Detroit Tigers’ Lou Whitaker from the Baseball Hall of Fame

Writer Michael Betzhold investigates the Major League slip-up

Exploring Metro Detroit’s Tiki Trend

Mutiny Bar and Lost River serve up island vacations with every drink

Q&A: Nancy Barr, Curator of Photography at the Detroit Institute of Arts

Plus, information about the DIA’s upcoming exhibit, Lost & Found

Meet the Makers: Salt Textile Studios

This textile maker wants her creations to be unique to ‘here’
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. Review: Testa Barra Wows with Contemporary Dishes
    The Macomb Township restaurant serves Italian fare that is on par with the surging Detroit food...
  2. Michigan-Made, Mother Nature-Approved Tools for Your Kitchen
    Ditch disposables and opt for reusable products
  3. Exploring Metro Detroit’s Tiki Trend
    Mutiny Bar and Lost River serve up island vacations with every drink
  4. A Deeper Look into the Racial and Ethnic Tensions Dividing Metro Detroit
    From the city to the suburbs, existing segregation could be hindering the region’s progress
  5. Every Day is Throwback Thursday at This Roseville Steakhouse
    Mr. Paul's Chophouse has remained consistently delicious for more than 50 years
  6. A Look at the Inexplicable Exclusion of Detroit Tigers’ Lou Whitaker from the Baseball Hall of Fame
    Writer Michael Betzhold investigates the Major League slip-up
  7. 3 Eateries that Focus on People, Profit, and the Planet
    These triple bottom line businesses are part of Detroit’s FoodLab organization
  8. Q&A: Nancy Barr, Curator of Photography at the Detroit Institute of Arts
    Plus, information about the DIA’s upcoming exhibit, Lost & Found
  9. This Vegan Catering Company Celebrates the ‘Natural Beauty of Food’
    Plus, tips on how to create your own photo-worthy grazing board
  10. Meet the Makers: Salt Textile Studios
    This textile maker wants her creations to be unique to ‘here’