Opened as School #10 in 1893 and often called the Garden Street School because it faced this thoroughfare which later became South St. Mary's Street. In May 1902 the School Board named the campus after James Butler Bonham.
James Butler Bonham (February 20, 1807 – March 6, 1836) was a 19th-century American soldier who died at the Battle of the Alamo during the Texas Revolution. He was a second cousin of William B. Travis and was a messenger of the Battle of the Alamo. His younger brother, Milledge Luke Bonham, was a brigadier general in the Confederate States Army in the American Civil War, and served as Governor of South Carolina from 1862 to 1864.
The school was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1975.
In 2007-08 Bonham became a pre-kinder to grade 6 academy with plans to add up to 8th-grade by 2009-10. Also effective for the 2007-08 school year Bonham became an internal charter to advance its Dual Language Program into the middle school grades, and further enhance fine arts, science and environmental studies.
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