Harpers Ferry in Jefferson County, West Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
Heads versus Hands
A national controversy regarding the education of African American students played out in the building before you. Throughout its history, Storer College faced great difficulty attracting funding. Most white benefactors favored trade school training for African American students. In order to attract better financial backing, Storer College opened this industrial arts building in 1905. The following year, W.E.B. DuBois spoke out on this campus against training only the hands and not the minds of African American students.
We want our children trained as intelligent human beings should be and we will fight for all time against any proposal to educate black boys and girls simply as servants and underlings, or simply for the use of other people. They have a right to know, to think, to aspire.
1906 Address to the Nation
delivered on the Storer College campus
[Background photo caption reads]
Despite the controversy, students continued to earn liberal arts degrees from the school until it closed in 1955.
[Inset photo captions read]
Storer students took industrial arts training in carpentry, upholstering and caning in these classrooms.
Storer College struggled to find funding for liberal arts courses such as this chemistry class.
Location. 39° 19.405′ N, 77° 44.489′ W. Marker is in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, in Jefferson County. Click for map. Marker is adjacent to the NPS Interpretive Design Center, off Hartzog Drive south of Fillmore Street. Marker is in this post office area: Harpers Ferry WV 25425, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Foundations of Freedom (within shouting distance of this marker); Storer College (within shouting distance of this marker); Stephen Tyng Mather (within shouting distance of this marker); John Brown (within shouting distance of this marker); The Niagara Movement at Storer College (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Storer College 1867-1955 (about 400 feet away); Camp Hill during the Civil War (about 400 feet away); A Land Divided (about 400 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Harpers Ferry.
Also see . . . Storer College. (Submitted on December 17, 2013, by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania.)
Categories. • African Americans • Education • Man-Made Features •
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 300 times since then and 4 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on , by William Fischer, Jr. of Scranton, Pennsylvania. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.