athletic shoes, Prairie View Interscholastic League


September 22, 2021 to February 26, 2022


African American Museum at Fair Park View map
3536 Grand Avenue,
Dallas, 75210

Additional Information


This exhibition, The History of the Prairie View Interscholastic League: Black High School Sports in Texas in the Era of Segregationfeatures memorabilia courtesy of the Prairie View Interscholastic League (PVIL) Coaches Association, which works to preserve and commemorate the history of the League and its governance over  athletic, academic, and music competitions for the state’s black high schools during segregation. The PVIL was organized in 1920 by Prairie View officials and existed until 1970 when its merger with the University Interscholastic League was completed.

The exhibit includes vintage images, trophies, news clips, uniforms and equipment. Despite being woefully underfunded and lacking other basic resources, PVIL schools featured passionate rivalries, legendary coaches and dozens of college All-Americans – most through historically black colleges such as Prairie View and Texas Southern University. This YouTube video called Stories of the Prairie View Interscholastic League, narrated by former U.S. Ambassador and Dallas Mayor Ron Kirk, that will be on view as part of the exhibition.

The UIL opened in 1910 at the University of Texas to govern competitions for “any white public school” in the state. It would be another 10 years before African American students in Texas would have the same guidance afforded them by the Texas Interscholastic League of Colored Schools, which would mirror the UIL’s operations and produce some of the finest football talent in the nation.

Additional exhibits on view at the African American Museum include:
-Sepia: Past. Pride. Power. extended through Feb. 26, 2022
-Politics, Protest and Black Progress in Dallas in the 1980s: The Photographs of George Fuller, extended through Feb. 26, 2022

About the African American Museum, Dallas
Founded in 1974 as a part of Bishop College, the museum has operated independently since 1979. For more than 40 years, the African American Museum has stood as a cultural beacon in Dallas and the Southwestern United States. Located in Dallas’ historic Fair Park, the African American Museum is the only museum in the Southwestern United States devoted to the collection, preservation and display of African American artistic, cultural and historical materials that relate to the African-American experience.

The African American Museum incorporates a wide variety of visual art forms and historical documents that portray the African American experience in the United States, Southwest, and Dallas. The Museum has a small, but rich collection of African art, African-American fine art and one of the largest African American folk-art collections in the United States. Learn more at