Down the Corridor: Legacy of Annie Webb Blanton

Texas historical marker at  the Dr. Annie Webb Blanton Elementary School. (Photo by Mario Zavala)This spring, the Texas Historical Commission recognized North Texas educator and leader Annie Webb Blanton for her significant role in Texas history with an official Texas historical marker at a Denton ISD school named for her, the Dr. Annie Webb Blanton Elementary School in Argyle. Among those in attendance were the school's 730 students, as well as teachers and administrators, many who are UNT alumni.

"When we opened the doors of Annie Webb Blanton in 2008, it was just a building," says Karen Satterwhite ('91 M.Ed.), principal of the school. "But then the children entered and the legacy for Dr. Blanton could be seen. This historical marker symbolizes the work of a great lady — a true servant of children."

The marker — the first state marker honoring a woman in Denton County — was co-sponsored by Denton County Historical Commission and Denton ISD.

Blanton began her career in higher education in 1901 at North Texas, where she spent 17 years as an associate professor of English and promoted gender unity, published grammar exercise books used across the country, and assisted in numerous school activities. She was elected as the first woman president of the Texas State Teachers Association in 1916. And in 1918, she was elected to serve as state superintendent of public instruction, the first woman in Texas elected to statewide office.

UNT alumni who attended the marker dedication included the following teachers at the school, administrators and other community members:

Bottom row (left to right): Jeanetta Smith, DISD Trustee; Trina Stephens; Stacey Gow; Jennifer Patrick; Laura Crocco; Jennifer Patrick; Karen Satterwhite; Annie Webb Blanton principal; (HISTORICAL MARKER) Victor Lozada; Laura Malins; Ashley Sears; Kari Hawkins; Sharon Cox, DISD director of communications and community relations; and David Minton, Denton Record-Chronicle photographer.

Middle row (left side only): Jennifer Woltman; Spencer Wolf.     

Top row (left to right): Travis Williams; Travis McKethan; David Hicks, DISD executive director for secondary academic Programs; Andy Eads, Denton County Commissioner Precinct 4;  Jeff Smith, Tom Harpool Middle School principal; Jamie Wilson, DISD superintendent;  Kevin Birdwell; Lisa Dorrell; Michelle Elizalde; Melissa Hooton; and Sarah Overstreet.

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