Louisville Municipal College





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Towards Louisville Municipal College

Slavery ends in the Commonwealth of Kentucky on December 18, 1865 with the ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment. Prior to the Civil War, Kentucky neither prohibited nor promoted the education of enslaved or free African Americans yet Kentucky had the dubious distinction of being the leader among the border states for its violent opposition to Freedmen's Bureau schools. Freedmen's Bureau schools were the sole source of education for African Americans prior to the Civil War.

The Kentucky General Assembly in 1874 created a separate state system of commons schools for African Americans and legalized segregated public education in 1891.

In the Commonwealth, the education of African Americans was the sole responsibility of the African American community and those persons and institutions sympathetic to their plight. Many states excluded African Americans from state-supported public and professional schools including Kentucky. The legal landscape for African Americans within the Commonwealth was shaped by
Berea College v Kentucky, the Kentucky legislature's passage of the "Day Law"in 1904, which prohibited African Americans from attending white colleges and universities thereby limiting educational opportunities as well as Plessy v Ferguson in 1896.

Beginning in 1879, a site at West Kentucky Street, between 7th and 8th Streets

A symbol of African American pride and autonomy for African Americans in Kentucky and nationally was State University. State University was chartered as a university in 1884. State University was previously known as the Kentucky Normal and Theological Institute,1879-1881.

State Colored Baptist University/ State University, 1881-1918, was an African American owned and controlled higher education institution and the predecessor of Simmons University. Under the terms of its 1894 amended charter, State University was the only African American educational institution in Kentucky with the power to grant professional degrees in theology, medicine and law. The Louisville National Medical College, 1888-1912, The Central Law School, 1890-1941, existed as apart of and was affiliated with both State University and Simmons University. And it appears possible that The Central Law School may have had some affiliation with Louisville Municipal College in some capacity.

Located on West Kentucky Street, between 7th and 8th Streets, State University was owned and operated by the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky; and financially supported mainly by the voluntary contributions of African
Americans Baptists, nationally and locally. State University was renamed Simmons University for William Simmons (1880-1890), a past State University president in 1919.

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"Louisville Municipal College, 1931-1951"
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