The first African-American student to attend Wheaton probably did so unbeknownst to the school. In 1856-57, Mary E. Stafford of Cumberland Island, Georgia attended Wheaton.
In 1902, Booker T. Washington, the founder of the Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute and the most prominent African-American leader in the country at that time, requested that his daughter, Portia, be admitted to Wheaton. This forced Wheaton to consider… Read More »
In 1919 an African-American student named Elizabeth Baker Lewis attended Wheaton, and had little or no trouble gaining admission to the college.
Though the College had long tracked the religious affiliation of applicants in some form or another, it did not become a deciding factor in admissions until the mid-1920s. In a 1926 letter to President Park, Edith White, Director of Admission,… Read More »
April 20, 1945, Rev. James H. Robinson, Minster of the Church of the Master in Harlem, and a prominent African-American rights activist, came to speak at Wheaton.
During the 1960s, efforts to attract Black students to Wheaton were met with middling success. Though enrollment statistics regarding applicants of color are not known, official correspondence indicates that the College had trouble attracting Black applicants and chalked this up… Read More »