Black History Month: Celebrating Those Who Came Before Us

  • John B. Lange Sr. (1807-1879) 

    John Lange Sr.

    Columbia Public Schools Lange Middle School is named for John B. Lange Sr. a prominent black businessman who came to Columbia in 1850.  Lange helped establish Columbia’s first black Baptist church, and joined other black Columbians to establish the Cummings Academy, which began in Lange’s home.  The school eventually became Frederick Douglass School. 

    His son, John B. Lange Jr., managed the career of celebrated pianist and ragtime composer, John William “Blind” Boone and the Blind Boone Company for 36 years. 

  • Source:  Columbia Public Schools Quarterly Report, Fall 1997; City of Columbia, Columbia Missouri Bicentennial, Daniel Boone Regional Library