One trait of early Presbyterians in this region was their commitment to education, so that everyone could read the Bible. While many families in Mecklenburg County could not read and could not afford to educate their children, everyone who could make sure their children learned to read.
In 1770, Royal Governor Tryon recommended that "a public seminary in some part of the back country of this Colony for the education of youth" be established in Charlotte. Queen's College, the first such institution south of Virginia, was chartered in 1771 and King George III promptly refused the charter. The school operated in defiance, and became Liberty Hall after independence was declared in Mecklenburg. It was moved to Salisbury after the war and soon closed. Andrew Jackson received a classical education there.
The Presbyterian ministers were educated men who opened academies in or near the churches. Numerous academies for both boys and girls opened in Mecklenburg throughout the 19th century. Boys of prominent families were frequently sent for higher education to Nassau Hall (College of New Jersey, later Princeton) or Davidson College.
Sara Frew Davidson's journal of 1837 documents teaching her father's enslaved African Americans to read. After the Civil War, Presbyterians established established Biddle Memorial Institute (later Johnson C. Smith University) to educate the freedmen.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: African Americans • Churches & Religion • Colonial Era • Education. In addition, it is included in the Historically Black Colleges and Universities series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1770.
Location. 35° 13.752′ N, 80° 50.594′ W. Marker is in Charlotte, North Carolina, in Mecklenburg County. It is in Charlotte center city. Marker is on West 5th Street just west of North Church Street, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 200 W Trade St, Charlotte NC 28202, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Gold Mining (here, next to this marker); The Importance Of Religion (here, next to this marker); Hornets' Nest (here, next to this marker); The Battle of Charlotte (here, next to this marker); Census Information (here, next to this marker); The War Between The States
Credits. This page was last revised on February 3, 2023. It was originally submitted on June 20, 2021, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 109 times since then and 2 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on June 20, 2021, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.