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History

Memphis can thank the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 for bringing the De La Salle Christian Brothers to West Tennessee. For years, the Catholic community in Memphis wanted the Christian Brothers to open a school in the city, but it wasn’t until the famous fire destroyed some of the Brothers’ schools in Chicago that four Brothers were available for transfer to Memphis.

In November 1871, with Brother Maurelian Sheel in charge, Christian Brothers College, a school operated by the Brothers, opened in downtown Memphis. From that original schoolhouse on Adams, CBC served boys from elementary school through college.

Less than 50 years later, when the United States joined the Allied Forces during World War I, Christian Brothers High School (CBHS) continued to operate, but college-level classes were suspended because 90 percent of those students joined the military. By 1940, the school had outgrown the Adams facility, and the Brothers relocated to East Parkway and Central Avenue. Though the high school remained in operation during World War II, the college again temporarily suspended some classes, but returned to full status as a two-year program in 1946 and a four-year program in the 1950s.

Brothers' Boys since 1871

Due to the high school’s expanding enrollment, the decision was made to relocate the facility to a separate campus. In September 1961, a 31.5-acre plot of land on Walnut Grove Road was purchased. Fundraising for construction of the new school began in earnest. In 1965, CBHS began to operate under a separate charter from the college.

Even though CBHS did not open its doors on Walnut Grove Road until 1965, it had already made history. Christian Brothers College had been quietly and peacefully integrated in 1960 when Ernest Donohue transferred from LeMoyne-Owen College. No secondary school in Memphis, public or private, however, had been integrated prior to 1963. In August of that year, Brother President Terence McLaughlin accepted the application of Jesse Turner Jr. and made CBHS the first integrated high school in the city. Turner graduated as co-salutatorian of the Class of 1967.
 
In the half-century since the move to Walnut Grove, Memphis has grown around the school, with neighborhoods, roads, and businesses replacing cotton fields.

CBHS continues to grow, especially in technology and curriculum development. In 2011, it installed campus-wide, state-of-the-art wireless network infrastructure, enabling internet connectivity from the baseball bleachers on the east end to the STEMM labs on the west end. A 1:1 computing program was added in 2012. Two years later, the school announced a transformative capital campaign and opened the new McEniry Hall to house its STEMM CoLab program, added a full-service lunch program, and opened a new athletic facility.

The 31.5-acre campus now boasts expanded classroom and athletic facilities, including the Brother Adrian and the Lavecchia Academic Wings, Tom Nix Stadium, Giacosa Baseball Complex, McEniry Hall, Brothers Development Center, and the Marr Business School. Renovated locker rooms, McCourtney Hall counseling offices, and Stephen Hall renovations were completed in November 2018.

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Discover CBHS

From rigorous academics and competitive athletics, to student leadership and extracurriculars, to community service and spiritual growth, opportunities abound here. Discover why the student experience at Christian Brothers High School is unlike any other.

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Make Summer Golden

You can now sign up for one of our many camps. Sports, academics, band, CBHS has it all for your Future Brothers' Boys and Girls this summer.

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The Tie that Binds

Our attentive faculty and staff do all they can to position our students to be successful and achieve their full potential. The comprehensive, college-preparatory CBHS curriculum provides flexibility for individuals' abilities by offering courses on multiple levels.

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Brothers Fieldhouse

Set to open in Fall 2021, this state-of-the-art facility will serve as the heart of our campus, connecting the school from Lavecchia Wing to Heffernan Hall under one roof and providing a space for the entire CBHS community to celebrate, learn, and worship.

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Live, Jesus, in our hearts... Forever

We provide spiritual companionship to all members of our diverse community, in and outside the classroom. We seek to strengthen every student's faith formation.

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A Taste of CBHS

It's that time again, to get your fill at A Taste of CBHS! This year, Taste goes live online May 16, and you can pick up Taste To Go in a tote with delicious goodies and discounts to commemorate our 10th annual event benefiting the Arts at CBHS and our amazing community of local restaurants and retailers!

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