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History of Education and Development of Historically Black Colleges and Universities

This presentation takes a look at the development of HBCU from Jamestown, when the first slave arrived to America through Reconstruction, Jim Crow, to Brown versus the Board of Ed and NAACP.

Rhonda Peterson

on 3 March 2015

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Transcript of History of Education and Development of Historically Black Colleges and Universities

History of Education and Development of Historically Black Colleges and Universities
African American Literacy

1619 Jamestown
“On August 1619 a Dutch man-of-war sold twenty African Negroes at Jamestown, and introduced negro slavery. “

List the most important African American events which help develop HBCUs by taking notes on important laws and events, so you can refer back to them in order to explain (academically) why your choices are correct. Be ready to defend them in discussion.

Black Female Bodies as a Commodities
A law in 1662 in the South declared that children of slave women were slaves.
In both the pre-abolition North and the antebellum South, labor demands made it difficult for slave children to engage in extensive learning or to attend school consistently.

Legal Cases: African American Education
Roberts versus Boston
Beginning of Secondary Education and End to Oppression for African Americans in Education

After Lincoln was assassinated, Andrew Johnson came into office.
He supported white supremacy in the South and favored pro-Union Southern political leaders who had aided the Confederacy once war had been declared. The Jim Crow era increased the struggle for African Americans to receive a good education. It is under this violent atmosphere that HBCU's grew. The first or National Land Grant Act of 1862, made post-secondary education possible to more people, while the Freeman's Bureau provided support to a small number of HBCUs.

HBCU's After Brown
Until the 1954 decision, Brown versus the Board, HBCU's were the only option for African American students. These HBCU's paved the way for students to become professionals and middle or professional class citizens. It also provided a network where the new middle class could meet and connect with other African America students from all over the world.
African- American Education History
In the North Quakers began schools for African Americans, but literacy depended on the master's permission.
In the South few slaves could read or write as masters feared rebellion and uprisings.
However, some slaves, e.g. Nat Turner, began teaching reading in secrecy; thus, the first African American schools in the South were formed.
Illiteracy As a Way of Life in the
"None of us was 'lowed to see a book or try to learn. They say we git smarter than they was is we learn anything, but we slips around and gits hold of that Webster's blue-back speller, and we hides it 'till way in the night, and then we lights a little pine torch, and studies that spelling book. We learn it too."

Jenny Procter, a former slave, (Writers Project Manuscripts ca 1937)
(Goldberg 2008).
No Schooling for Slaves or
In 1834 Connecticut made it illegal to provide free education to black students.
Writer's Project Manuscripts in HBO's
Unchained Memories

In 1849, the case of Roberts versus the City of Boston was held. The city school board declared that segregation was legal; thus, white children and black children could no longer associate in a public arena.
First Law for Legal Schooling for
Roberts lost his case with the City of Boston, but in 1855, Massachusetts legislature changed its policy and declared that "no person shall be excluded from a Public School on account of race, color or prejudice."
Dred Scott Decision
In 1857, the Supreme Court under Chief Justice Robert Taney ruled that all Blacks, slaves and Freemen could never be citizens of the United States.
Freedom to Learn At Last: Emancipation
First Black College was established in the North, Cheyney University of Pennsylvania in 1837, but did not award degrees until 1914 and was founded by Richard Humphreys, who trained AA to become teachers.

Lincoln University was founded in 1854 by a minister (Dickey) and a Quaker (Cresson); it has such notable alumni as "U.S. Supreme Court Justice, Thurgood Marshall; Harlem Renaissance poet, Langston Hughes; musical legend, Cab Calloway; Medal of Honor winner and pioneering African-American editor Christian Fleetwood; the first President of Nigeria, Nnamdi Azikiwe; the first President of Ghana, Kwame Nkrumah; song artist and activist Gil Scott-Heron; Tony Award-winning actor Roscoe Lee Browne" (wiki) .
Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments
Passed by Congress in June 1865, gave African Americans agency as it granted African-Americans citizenship.

While the Fifteenth Amendment granted African Americans the right to vote, so they could have a voice in Washington D.C.
Civil Rights Act of 1875

In March 1875, Congress passed the Civil Rights Act which prohibited discrimination in public places.

This Act was overturned in 1883, declaring that the fourteenth Amendment allows individuals and businesses to discriminate against individuals…this paves the way for segregation in public schools; however, the second Morrill Act help create 19 more HBCU's, and by 1902 there are over 85 African American schools.

Birth of Jim Crow

“On June 7, 1892, a 30-year-old colored shoemaker named Homer Plessy was jailed for sitting in the "White" car of the East Louisiana Railroad. Plessy was only one-eighths black and seven-eighths white. the supreme court decided that there was a legal distinction between the white and colored races .”

Berea College v. Kentucky

Once a school the was desegregated since 1855, the Day Law of 1904 changed the college's admission policies. The law was taken to the supreme court, which upheld the right of states to prohibit private colleges from admitting black and white college students together
Early HBCU graduates were a great source of pride among the African American people, for HBCU's were a bastions of hope and high educational standards. Since the Brown decision, because of duplicate programs and equal admission into PWI, many HBCU's struggle to exist. There are debates and lack of research concerning whether HBCUs are segregated colleges. Moreover, there is little research on HBCU's and the HBCU experience.
Future of HBCU's

A researcher, Allen maintained that AA students who attend an HBCU have higher aspirations, take more risks in intellectual endeavors and feel more engaged, and have more acceptance and encouragement than students in PWI's (1992).
HBCUs provide its students with cultural heritage, support of dreams, and provide mentors for its students. Moreover, HBCU traditionally serves the community from which it serves, and continues to do so in the twenty-first century
In 1940, in Florida in Dade County a Mr. Darsey was murder, at which point twenty-five to forty “negroes” were taken into custody, without warrants, and questioned. Of these men, Woodson, Woodward, Davis and Chambers were retained, and submitted to all night vigils, and told they would be moved because of “mob” mentality (lynching). In a state of terror, denied counselors or charges little time for sleep, they were observed and questioned until “broken”; whereupon these tenant, uneducated men eventually pleaded guilty to murder.
The case was taken to the Supreme Court because the men were denied “due process” under the Fourteenth Amendment. The murder charges –which were handed down by two juries—were thrown out ; thus, the court decreed “due process” must be observed by all officials of law.
The lawyers for the petitioners were Leon A. Ransom, S. D. McGill, Thurgood Marshall

Assisted by Thurgood Marshall, Charles Houston begins to challenge segregation in secondary , graduate schools and law.

W.E.B. DuBois, Ida Wells-Barnett were some founders NAACP, whose goal was to stop lynching and inequalities perpetuated on African Americans. They became the primary tool fighting against segregation.

Thurgood Marshall wanted to attend Law School in Maryland but was rejected. He applied to and attended Howard Law School, which admitted African Americans . Donald Murray was an intelligent man who applied to University of Maryland Law school. He had excellent grades and could compete but his skin color was dark, so he was rejected. Once he graduated, Marshall with Houston, (NAACP) took the Murray case to Baltimore City Court in 1935, where they challenged the university's admission policies. The court ruled in Murray's favor and in 1938, Murray was the first Black man to graduate University of MD's Law school.

Equal under the law meant the facilities of both races should be equal in condition and expenditure per child should be equal.

In 1899, Georgia closed a free African American secondary school stating it was in a state of disrepair and required too much money to fix; however, a white school of similar disrepair remained open to service 60 white children, although there were more negro children.

Oppressed by Jim Crow and lynching, Booker T Washington (Head of Tuskagee Institute—a HBCU) made a 1885 Atlanta agreement with white Southern businesses and education. His agreement maintained that African Americans would build the economy and maintain segregation, while secretly believing in court challenges to segregation. WEB Dubois rallied against this stance, resulting in the beginning of the NAACP.

“On June 7, 1892, a 30-year-old colored shoemaker named Homer Plessey was jailed for sitting in the "White" car of the East Louisiana Railroad. Plessey was only one-eighths black and seven-eighths white. The supreme court decided (in 1896) that there was a legal distinction between the white and colored races .” Although discriminatory, this began the growth of HBCU’s.

From Jim Crow to Thurgood Marshall

Lonnie Smith a voter in Harris County challenged the 1923 law. Smith won, and Blacks were allowed to vote in primary elections in Texas.
Representing the NAACP, Thurgood Marshall argued this case.

Challenged Texas in 1944 held elections where Blacks had been disenfranchised from voting in the primary elections secondary to a 1923 law that stated the party can establish its own internal rules.

In a study commissioned by NAACP in the 1930’s, Nathan Margold proved that facilities for blacks were always separate but never equal to those maintained for whites.

Looking at all of the actions perpetuated against African Americans in the courts, Jim Crow laws appeared to be a permanent fixture in the South.

The Supreme Court maintained that no discrimination had occurred.
When Henry Williams was indicted for murder by an all white jury (eligible voters), so had jury by his peers.
The Supreme Court rejected his appeal 9-0.

In 1898 in the reconstruction period, Mississippi demanded that all illiterate voters pay poll taxes and take a literacy test. However illiterate whites were exempt from the practice by a grandfather clause.

Williams v. Mississippi
Cummin' v. Board of Ed in Georgia
Court Perception Upheld
Actions Against Black Citizenship
Margold Report
Murray v. Maryland
National Association for Advancement of Colored
Chambers v. Florida
Smith v. Allwright
Use Your Activity Sheets for Law Activity
Berea versus Kentucky (1908)
This case established private schools as corporations. The court maintained that it is the right of the state to prohibit private admission of whites or blacks as private schools are chartered as private corporations--thus corporate sovereignty precedes state sovereignty. This case reinforced segregation (see Plessy versus Ferguson, 1857).
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