Mississippi City Aims to Preserve the Home of the First Black Woman to Earn an Educational Doctorate

The city of Vicksburg, Mississippi, has assumed ownership of the former home of Jane McAllister, the first black women in the United States to earn an educational doctorate. The city is applying for a state grant to restore the home and make it into a civil rights historic site and museum.

Dr. McAllister was born in Vicksburg in 1899. She graduated from high school at the age of 15 and then enrolled at historically black Talladega College in Alabama. She graduated at the age of 19 and went on to obtain a master’s degree from the University of Michigan. She earned an educational doctorate at Teachers College of Columbia University in 1929. Her thesis was entitled, The Training of Negro Teachers in Louisiana.

After earning her doctorate, McAllister taught for 20 years at Miner Teachers College in Washington, D.C., an institution that was incorporated into the University of the District of Columbia. She then returned to Mississippi to teach at Jackson State University. She retired in 1967.

Dr. McAllister died in 1996 at the age of 96.