Black First of the Day

Black Firsts 3e
ISBN: 9781578593699
$34.95

Who was the first known black to graduate from an American college?

  • By 1860 only about twenty-eight blacks had received baccalaureate degrees from American colleges.
  • He later taught.
  • He went on to become one of the first blacks elected to a state legislature.
  • He received a bachelor's degree from Middlebury College in Vermont.


1823

Alexander Lucius Twilight (1795-1857)

Alexander Lucius Twilight (1795-1857) was the first known black to graduate from an American college, when he received a bachelor's degree from Middlebury College in Vermont. Twilight, who was born in Bradford, Vermont, went on to become an educator, preacher, and legislator. He taught in Peru, New York, studied theology, and was licensed to preach by the Champlain Presbytery in New York. He was school principal in Brownington, Vermont, and at the same time minister of the local church. He became one of the first blacks elected to a state legislature, serving Montpelier, Vermont, from 1836 to 1837. Other black college graduates from this early period include: Edward A. Jones, who received his degree from Amherst College in Massachusetts; and John Brown Russwurm, first black graduate from Bowdoin College in Maine. Both graduated in 1826, with Jones graduating a few days ahead of Russworm. By 1860 only about twenty-eight blacks had received baccalaureate degrees from American colleges.

Sources: Bennett, Before the Mayflower, p. 172; Bowles and DeCosta, Between Two Worlds, pp. 12-13; Logan and Winston, Dictionary of American Negro Biography, p. 613.

From Black Firsts: 4,000 Ground-Breaking and Pioneering Events by Jessie Carney Smith, © 2013 Visible Ink Press®. A celebration of achievement, accomplishments and pride.

< Previous Fact


Dig deeper with these related titles:

Black Firsts 3e Black Firsts: 4,000 Ground-Breaking and Pioneering Events, Third Edition
by Jessie Carney Smith, Ph.D.

Achievement engenders pride, and the most significant accomplishments involving people, places, and events in black history are gathered in Black... Read More »

ISBN: 9781578593699
$34.95
African American Almanac African American Almanac: 400 Years of Triumph, Courage and Excellence
by Lean'tin Bracks, PhD

A wealth of milestones, inspiration, and challenges met. . . The most complete and affordable single-volume reference of African... Read More »

ISBN: 9781578593231
$27.95
Freedom Facts and Firsts Freedom Facts and Firsts: 400 Years of the African American Civil Rights Experience
by Jessie Carney Smith, Ph.D. and Linda T Wynn

Spanning nearly 400 years from the early abolitionists to the present, this guide book profiles more than 400 people, places, and events that have... Read More »

ISBN: 9781578591923
$24.95
Black Heroes Black Heroes
by Jessie Carney Smith, Ph.D.

"If there is no struggle, there is no progress," wrote Frederick Douglass. "This struggle may be a moral one; or it may be a physical one; or it may... Read More »

ISBN: 9781578591367
$29.95