Reverend W.B. Derrick portrait   Save
Ohio History Connection
Description: Portrait of Reverend W.B. Derrick, D.D., President of the Board of Directors of Payne Theological Seminary at Wilberforce University, ca. 1899. This photograph appears in the Annual Catalogue of Wilberforce University, 1899-1900, which was published in 1900. In 1856, the Methodist Episcopal Church established Wilberforce University near Xenia, Ohio, to provide African American access to a college education. The university was the first private black college in the United States. Its founders named the institution after William Wilberforce, a prominent 18th century abolitionist. A number of African-American Ohioans attended the school during its early years. During the American Civil War, attendance declined as many students enlisted in the Union army, and Wilberforce University closed in 1862. In 1863, the African Methodist Episcopal Church acquired ownership of the university. Under the direction of Daniel Payne, a bishop in the AME Church, John Mitchell, a school principal in Cincinnati, and James Shorter, an AME pastor from Zanesville, Wilberforce reopened its doors. The institution operated as a private university serving the African American community for the next 24years. In 1887, the State of Ohio began to provide Wilberforce with funds to help finance the institution, which brought to an end the university's exclusively private status. The state also helped the university create a Normal and Industrial Department that eventually evolved into Central State University. View on Ohio Memory.
Image ID: 378_771W641h_1899_Derrick
Subjects: Wilberforce University; Higher education; Historically Black Colleges and Universities; Religious education;
Places: Wilberforce (Ohio); Greene County (Ohio)