Many civic-minded people have donated land on which to build schools in our community, but few have surpassed the generosity and commitment to education displayed by the life and actions of Lester Davis. Mr. Davis had his own house moved from the property on which this school stands, so a school might be built. Such was his devotion to the young people of Denton and his respect for education. His generosity was unique in his own time, and also all too rare at present times and throughout history.
Lester Davis instilled in all his own children the value of getting an exceptional education. When he moved his growing family to Denton in 1924, there were no public schools in their area, which was to the east of the county courthouse. All children who lived in this area had to risk crossing the railroad tracks twice a day to attend class. He felt that was frightening and many times a dangerous thing, especially for young children.
Not long after settling in Denton, Mr. Davis began requesting that School Trustees build a school in the area to serve the town's growing population. When his children were grown and there was no school east of Denton County Courthouse, Mr. Davis remained concerned about the young children. He gave Denton ISD his own land on which his two-story homestead was built. He had his house moved across the street thus providing an ideal site for this school. In 1950 the new elementary school, east of the courthouse opened its doors, with the name Jeff Davis School. Mr. and Mrs. Lester Davis and their nine children were extremely pleased about the new school.
Eventually, the school was remodeled to accommodate students needing an alternative education and was renamed - The Lester Davis School, in honor of his donation. Now, 50 years later, his family is proud of the legacy he has left to our community and Denton ISD school children. Mr. Davis' persistent vision is now fulfilled.