The Unique History Of Alabama State University

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“ One must return to the yesteryear in order to travel frontward ” , is an old African adage that has been used to explicate the intent of analyzing history. This African adage non merely refers to the survey of American history, but besides the survey of one ’ s household history. Another stating that has been used to mention to the survey of history is, “ You must larn your history, or you are bound to reiterate it. ” These rules can use to instruction every bit good. The intent of go toing college is to have a formal instruction. The proper attack to get down college degree surveies is to larn your school ’ s history. Enlightenment of the troubles and barriers during the early phases of a school ’ s development ; in add-on to a deeper regard for a university, can be obtained, and if obtained, will function as excess motive. This holds true on the campus of Alabama State University, in Montgomery, Alabama. The alone history of Lincoln Normal School, present twenty-four hours Alabama State University, is a major focal point country in the survey of this university ’ s history.

Modern twenty-four hours Alabama State University is a merchandise of the mid-nineteenth century thought, held by African Americans, to open universities for slaves. This thought was hard to implement because most slaves were non educated, and there were no agencies of communicating due to the deficiency of a consolidative linguistic communication. The terminal of the Civil War in 1865 heightened the state ’ s want, particularly in the South, to supply a formal instruction for the freshly freed slaves. The state ’ s first Historically Black Colleges and Universities ( HBCU ) were founded as a consequence. The first historic Black universities, which were founded with money from the American Missionary Association, and the celebrated Amistad trail, are Fisk University, Hampton University, Talladega College, and Lincoln Normal School. After these schools were established, it was still difficult for a former-salve to obtain an instruction. Fisk University for illustration, merely admitted those who were the kids of a female slave and a white male, usually a slave maestro. Many schools during this clip period adapted this same entryway standard. A southern school, Lincoln Normal School, did non hold any bias rules rooted in their entryway procedure.

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Peyton Finley founded Lincoln Normal School, contemporary Alabama State University in 1867, in Marion, Alabama. Peyton Finley is besides noted for being the first African American appointed to the Alabama State Board of Education. Finley ’ s engagement with the board of instruction allowed him to acquire the American Missionary Association and the Freemen ’ s Bureau to supply books, supplies, instructors, and fundss for the new school. However, in 1864, the American Missionary Association went bankrupt, and could no longer back up Lincoln Normal School. Therefore, the African American community in Marion, Alabama supported the fiscal demands of the school. In 1874, Lincoln Normal School became the first province supported establishment in Alabama. Prior to this important event in the school ’ s history, George N. Card became the first president of the establishment in 1873.

George N. Card is largely noted for functioning as president when the Lincoln Normal School became the state ’ s first province supported Broad Arts College for African American. Card besides established Alabama State College Laboratory High School, in Marion, Alabama in 1874. During Card ’ s term of office as president, the Klu Klux Klan in Marion, Alabama endangered the lives of the African Americans go toing the establishment. In 1878, to the delectation of many African Americans in Marion, Alabama, William Burns Paterson became the new president. William Paterson was born in Tullibody, Scotland. The African American community was happy that Paterson was the new president because he was a really aggressive and austere adult male. They knew that he would be able to assist the establishment to progress to greater highs. Paterson, along with a few pupils, showed his aggressiveness by partaking in gunplay with the Klu Klux Klan when they were seeking to put the school edifices on fire. Paterson ’ s aggressive attitude brought societal convulsion to the Marion community. Therefore, to protect the safety of the pupils go toing Lincoln Normal School, Paterson relocated the establishment. The school was relocated to Montgomery, Alabama in 1887, and renamed Alabama Colored People ’ s University. Unfortunately, the school loss its province fiscal support the same twelvemonth. In 1889, the school was renamed Normal School for Colored Students, and re-gained fiscal aid from the province. The school ran thirty-three old ages on its original program as a high school teachers-training establishment. The school had Is T foremost graduating category in 1890. Sadly, William Burn Paterson died in 1915.

The first African American instructor, John William Beverly, became the 3rd president in 1915. Beverly organized and established the school as a four-year establishment with the same program of being a high school teachers-training establishment. Beverly besides advanced the province of the establishment by buying extra land to spread out the campus. The first residence hall and faculty-dining hall was constructed in 1918. John William Beverly term of office as president ended in 1920. George W. Trenholm seceded Beverly as president.

1920 was George W. Trenholm ’ s first twelvemonth as president, and Alabama State College Laboratory High School had its first graduating category. Trenholm ’ s most of import part to the establishment was in that same twelvemonth. Trenholm ’ s add-on of the Junior College Program, which comprised two old ages beyond high school, made the establishment a criterion “ Normal School ” . After functioning a five-year term, Trenholm ’ s boy, Harper Council Trenholm took over the place as president. At the age of 25, H.C. Trenholm became the establishment ’ s youngest president. H.C. Trenholm elevated the Junior College position of the school to a four-year establishment of higher acquisition in 1928. Due to the new educational position of the school, the name was changed to Alabama State Teachers College in 1929. In 1931, the first graduation for the four-year college course of study was held. H.C. Trenholm helped the college to progress even further in 1940 by establishing the college ’ s first alumnus plan. The first alumnus plan was in 1943. The college one time once more was renamed under H.C. Trenholm ’ s term of office as president to Alabama State College for Negroes in 1948. H.C. Trenholm relinquished the place of president in 1962.

Levi Watkins was appointed as the 6th president of Alabama State College for Negroes in 1962. That same twelvemonth, under Watkins ’ supervising, the college began to offer athletic scholarships. Watkins served as president during a socially disruptive clip in the South. The civil rights motion was in full swing in Watkins ’ first twelvemonth as president. The pupils at Alabama State College for Negroes were critical members in the civil rights motion. Watkins continued to force the college frontward while take parting in the motion himself. Watkins was an instrumental factor in the accreditation of the college in 1966 by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. In 1969, he approved the proposal to alter the name of the college from Alabama State College for Negroes to Alabama State University. A few old ages subsequently, in 1975, the administrative control of the university changed from the State Board of Education to the Alabama State Board of Trustees. Watkins ’ last great part to the university while functioning as president was the development and beginning of University College in 1975.

Robert L. Randolph, Leon Howard, Clifford C. Baker, and William H. Harris, severally were the undermentioned presidents of Alabama State University. These presidents besides made really enormous parts to contemporary Alabama State University. However, if it were non for the difficult work of Peyton Finley, George N. Card, William B. Paterson, John W. Beverly, G.W. Trenholm, H.C. Trenholm, and Levi Watkins, the university would non be every bit outstanding as it is today. The persevering attempt of these presidents to do this university a success has non been overlooked. Buildings on the campus today have been named in their award. Finley Hall was named after the university ’ s laminitis, Peyton Finley. The Levi Watkins Learning Center was named after the 6th president that approved the name of Alabama State University, Levi Watkins. Card Hall was named after university ’ s first president ; George Card. Beverly Hall was given its name in award of the president that had the first residence hall built, John William Beverly. Tullibody Hall was named after the place of birth of William B. Paterson, which was Tullibody, Scotland. H.C. Trenholm Hall and G.W. Trenholm Hall were named after Harper Council Trenholm and George W. Trenholm. H.C. Trenholm elevated the educational position of the university from a Junior college to a four-year college, and G.W. Trenholm advanced the school to a normal school of instruction.

The alone history of Alabama State University is filled with the dreams of slaves for a better life. Payton Finley made the first measure in conveying the dreams of the slaves alive. The obstructions that were overcome by the influential personalities that assisted in the university ’ s success will ever be an inspiration for pupils go toing this esteemed university. Alabama State University truly has stood by its slogan, “ A proud tradition … the promise of a bright hereafter! ”

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