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Terrell, Mary Church, 1863-1954


Born in Memphis, Tennessee, Mary Terrell received her B.A. from Oberlin College and studied in France, Switzerland, Germany, and Italy. She was a teacher at Wilberforce University and the Washington, D.C., Colored High School. She served as president of the National Association of Colored Women and was the first woman to be elected president of the Bethel Literary and Historical Association. She was president of the Women’s Republican League of Washington and in 1892 helped to form the Colored Woman’s League in Washington. She became the first woman in the United States to serve on a board of education, when she was elected to D.C.'s board. Terrell spoke at the International Congress of Women in 1904 and served as the U.S.'s representative at the International League for Peace and Freedom. In the 1940's and 1950's she pushed for the end of segregation in public places in D.C.


Neverdon-Morton, Cynthia. “Terrell, Mary Church.” American National Biography. February 2000. http://www.anb.org/articles/15/15-00686.html, 28 March, 2005.

 Who’s Who in Colored America . Ed. Thomas Yenser. 5 th ed. Thomas Yenser: New York, 1940. pg. 502.


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