Looking Back: The Last Walk - The Bend Magazine

Looking Back: The Last Walk

Past graduates saw much change, including the end of a graduation tradition

Photo Provided by Corpus Christi Public Libraries

The high school years are full of traditions, especially as senior year winds to a close. Before students counted down the days to receiving their cap and gown, it was a white dress that high school ladies looked forward to wearing. 

White dresses were a longstanding tradition nationwide, having been worn for graduation ceremonies for much of the 19th century. Although they were still tradition in other schools, the 1931 ceremony pictured above marked the end of the tradition for Corpus Christi High School. The photos of the 1932 ceremony feature a cap and gown not unlike what is worn today.

The students pictured experienced a great deal of change during their school years. When they were young, WWI began and Corpus Christi — home to a training camp, Camp Scurry — had a population under 10,000. 

The 1929 move to this new high school building, featuring a 1,600-person capacity auditorium, was the result of growth of the district as the city’s population boomed following the opening of the port in 1926. The city’s largest buildings were being built on the bluff downtown during their high school years, and CCISD grew to over 4,300 students by their graduation.

The last time the ladies in white dresses walked the stage at graduation was just one of the big changes afoot in Corpus Christi that was witnessed by this student body.