Archaeological Dig Finds 3,000 Artifacts From Historically Black Latta University in Raleigh, North Carolina

Morgan L. Latta was born a slave in 1856. He later graduated from Shaw University and entered the ministry. He authored an autobiography entitled The History of My Life and Work. In 1892 he founded Latta University in Raleigh, North Carolina.

The university was actually a trade school for African-American men and women. Men were taught to be carpenters and blacksmiths. Women learned to cook and sew. The university also included a large orphanage for black children and a working farm.

Latta University closed in the early 1920s. The Latta House, home of the university’s founder, stood at the site until it was destroyed by fire in 2007.

Now an archaeological dig has uncovered more than 3,000 artifacts from Latta University. Only 40 square feet of the several hundred acres have been excavated. The city of Raleigh plans to create a historical park on the site.