Hallie Quinn Brown

Hallie Q. Brown (Photo courtesy of Wikipedia)

Hallie Quinn Brown

(March 10, 1849 (1850) – September 16, 1949)

Born to former slaves, Brown moved around as a child, including to a farm in Canada in 1864 and finally to Ohio in 1870. Brown enrolled at Wilberforce University and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in 1873.

Brown began her career as a teacher in South Carolina, where she taught both children and older adults. She also worked as a teacher in Mississippi before traveling back to Ohio for a teaching position. She began a lecture tour on behalf of Wilberforce University in the mid-1880s and received a degree from Chautauqua in 1886 and her Masters of Science from Wilberforce University in 1887. She was the first woman to accomplish this goal at the University.  

Brown held many other prestigious positions; she was a dean at Allen University, a principal of Tuskegee Institute under Booker T. Washington, and became a professor at Wilberforce University. Brown was well-known for her elocution and was a frequent lecturer on women’s issues, the temperance movement, and the plight of African Americans. Impressively, she represented the United States at the International Congress of Women in 1899 and was a speaker at the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union in 1895. She also performed for Queen Victoria of England in 1897.

Brown was the founder of the Colored Woman’s League of Washington D.C. which eventually became the National Association of Colored Women. From 1905 to 1912, she was the president of the Ohio State Federation of Colored Women and the president of the N.A.C.W. from 1920 to 1924. In 1924 she spoke at the Republican National Convention and directed campaign work for African-Americans for Calvin Coolidge. Brown was also an active member of the A.M.E. Church.

Brown passed away in Wilberforce, Ohio in 1949 – she was either 99 or 100 years old. She is buried at Massies Creek Cemetery in Cedarville, Ohio.  Hallie Q. Brown


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