By Audrey Thomas McCluskey
Emerging from the darkness of the slave period and Reconstruction, black activist ladies Lucy Craft Laney, Mary McLeod Bethune, Charlotte Hawkins Brown, and Nannie Helen Burroughs based colleges aimed toward freeing African-American adolescence from deprived futures within the segregated and decidedly unequal South. From the overdue 19th via mid-twentieth centuries, those participants fought discrimination as contributors of a bigger circulation of black girls who uplifted destiny generations via a spotlight on schooling, social provider, and cultural transformation. Born unfastened, yet with the shadow of the slave previous nonetheless implanted of their realization, Laney, Bethune, Brown, and Burroughs outfitted off every one other’s successes and realized from each one other’s struggles as directors, teachers, and suffragists. Drawing from the women’s personal letters and writings approximately academic tools and from remembrances of surviving scholars, Audrey Thomas McCluskey unearths the pivotal importance of this sisterhood’s legacy for later generations and for the establishment of schooling itself.
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Additional info for A Forgotten Sisterhood: Pioneering Black Women Educators and Activists in the Jim Crow South
43. Carol Allen, Black Women Intellectuals: Strategies of Nation, Family, and Neighborhood in the Works of Pauline Hopkins, Jessie Fauset, and Marita Bonner (New York: Garland Publishing, 1998), 4. 44. Kevin Gaines, Uplifting the Race: Black Leadership, Politics, and Culture in the Twentieth Century (Durham: University of North Carolina Press, 1996), 128–52. 45. Linda Perkins, “The Cult of True Womanhood in the Education of Black Women,” Journal of Social Issues 39 (Fall 1983):17–28. 46. ” “Moving Like a Whirlwind” 35 47.
One of the many early tragedies that hit Haines was a devastating typhoid fever epidemic that sickened several students and took the life of Laney’s first teaching assistant, Cora Freeman of Framington, Massachusetts. 14 Despite such hardships, Laney made strides towards the permanence and control she sought for the school. She immediately realized that the need was too great to admit only girls, as she had once hoped to do, and soon the school’s enrollment was up to 75 girls and boys, with no growing room.
The closing of Ware High added to Laney’s prominence in black education in Augusta. 99 Haines remained the only high school option for blacks in Augusta until the opening of the A. R. Johnson public high school in 1937, four years after Laney’s death. During the intervening years she continued to voice her mistrust of public education and her belief in a mission-based educational system. ” 100 But Laney, showing some flexibility and perhaps anticipating the changing landscape, also acknowledged a need for private and public schools to work together.