Caroline Allen, 1925 – 2005
Caroline Baker was born in Texas. She graduated from Huston-Tillotson College in 1946. She married that year and moved to Florida with her
husband, Samuel A. Allen where they began their teaching careers. When they arrived at the Crestview Depot they
asked for directions to Baker, Florida. The agent said, “Baker! Nobody goes to
Baker!” But he arranged for them to ride
to Baker with the mailman that morning.
They were able to find a house to rent for six dollars a month. They found someone to wire the house for
electricity but there was no indoor plumbing.
They got their water from a pump across the street.
Caroline and her husband
taught at Drew School in Baker from
August 1949 until May, 1954. That is when
Carver Hill School was built in
Crestview and they were transferred to teach there. When the public schools were integrated,
Caroline was transferred to teach at Crestview High and her husband to Richbourg Junior High School. They remained there until they retired;
Caroline retired in 1979.
But their contributions to
our community did not stop with teaching school. Both were actively involved in many areas: She served as President of Carver-Hill
Memorial and Historical Society and led the drive to establish the Carver-Hill Museum, fund its new
building and served as Director. She was an active member of the Chamber of
Commerce, the NAACP, the African American Community
Council. Most important to her was her
church family – Lebanon Baptist Church of Baker, Fl.
Recognized and honored for her major achievements in religious
education, historical preservation and community service, she was inducted into
the Okaloosa County Hall of Fame in 2001.
Mrs. Allen was an educator in county schools for 30 years. She dedicated
her life to the preservation of local history.
It was a terrible shock to the community when she was killed in an
automobile accident in 2005. She and
other family members were on their way home from a high school reunion. She was eighty years old at the time. Hers was a life well lived and serves as an
example to all that even in death, she leaves optimism that we can better our
lives and our world.
Educational Services. 2008. Baker, Florida