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Louisiana State University 


University of Texas 

University of Florida 


University of Georgia 


Virginia Military Institute, 
formerly University of Virginia 


University of Arkansas 


University of North Carolina 
H. Jos i AH MORSE 

University of South Carolina 

University of Tennessee 

University of Alabama 

University of Mississippi 









NOTE Copies of this publication may be had by applying to the Secre 
tary of the Commission, Box 722, Lexington, Va., or to Miss G. C. Mann, 
Box 418, Charlottesville, Va. 



Organization Meeting, Nashville, May 24, 1912 5 

Second Meeting, University of Georgia, December 19, 20, 1912 6 

Third Meeting, Richmond, Hampton Institute and University of Vir 
ginia, December 18, 19, 20, 1913 12 

Fourth Meeting, Washington, D. C, December 14, 15, 1914 18 

Fifth Meeting, Montgomery and Tuskegee Institute, May 5, 6, 7, 1915 24 

Sixth Meeting, Durham, N. C., Trinity College and University of North 

Carolina, January 4, 5, 1916 32 

Seventh Meeting, Blue Ridge and Asheville, Aug. 30, 31, Sept. 1, 1916 38 

Eighth Meeting, Washington, D. C., August 29, 30, 31, 1917 41 

Open Letters to the College Men of the South 45 

Work of the Commission, by Dr. (now Governor) C. H. Brough 49 

Report of Committee on the Civic Status of the Negro, by Prof. 
W O. Scrop r 2 r s. Chairman 53 

OO ' 

Report of Committee on Economics, by Prof. R. J. H. DeLoach, 
Chairman 63 

The Economic Condition of the Negroes of Knoxville, by R. G. 
Sanford 69 

An Open Letter on Lynching to the Stuttgart (Ark.) Committee, 
by Prof. D. Y. Thomas 72 

Index 74 

"I am very glad to express my sincere interest in this work and sympathy 
with it." 

President Wilson to the Commission, 

December 15, 1914. 




The organization meeting of the University Commission on Southern 
Race Questions was held at the call of Dr. James H. Dillard at the Young 
Men's Christian Association Building, Nashville, Tenn.> on the morning of 
May 24, 1912. Dr. Dillard presided and outlined his purpose in calling 
together representatives of eleven Southern State universities, which was to 
foster a scientific approach to the study of the race question in the South. 
He stated that he had visited eleven State universities, and had found in each 
a cordial response to the plan of establishing a University Commission on 
Race Relations, with the idea that such Commission should consult with 
leading men in both races, should endeavor to keep informed in regard to the 
relations existing between the races, and should aim especially to influence 
Southern College men to approach the subject with intelligent information 
and with sympathetic interest. Dr. Dillard reviewed existing race conditions 
in the South as he saw them, and then called upon the members individually 
for an informal expression of opinion. Each member of the Commission 
responded briefly. 

The Commission was composed of one representative from each of eleven 
State universities in the South, as follows : 

James J. Doster, University of Alabama. 
C. H. Brough, University of Arkansas. 
James M. Farr, University of Florida. 
R. J. H. DeLoach, University of Georgia. 
W. O. Scroggs, Louisiana State University. 
W. D. Hedleston, University of Mississippi. 
Charles W. Bain, University of North Carolina. 
Josiah Morse, University of South Carolina. 
James D. Hoskins, University of Tennessee. 
W. S. Sutton, University of Texas. 
William M. Hunley, University of Virginia. 

Dr. W. D. Weatherford, who was invited to sit with the Commission, 
explained the nature of his work on race matters in the South. 

Professor Brough was chosen chairman, and Professor Hunley, secre 
tary. The Commission then adjourned to the meeting of the section on the 


race question of the Southern Sociological Congress, having previously 
decided to hold its next meeting on December 19, 1912, at the University of 
Georgia, Athens, Ga. 


The second meeting of the University Commission on Southern Race 
Questions was held at the University of Georgia, Athens, Ga., December 19 
and 20, 1912. Professor Brough, chairman of the Commission, presided. 
Three sessions were held, at noon and at 8 o'clock p. M. of the 19th, and at 
9 o'clock on the morning of the 20th. All three sessions were held in the 
office of Chancellor Barrow, of the university. Those present were: 

Professor Doster, University of Alabama. 
Professor Brough, University of Arkansas. 
Professor Farr, University of Florida. 
Professor DeLoach, University of Georgia. 
Professor Scroggs, Louisiana State University. 

Chancellor Kincannon, representing Professor Hedleston, University of 

Professor Bain, University of North Carolina. 
Professor Morse, University of South Carolina. 
Professor Sutton, University of Texas. 
Professor Hunley, University of Virginia. 
Dr. Dillard, president of the Jeanes Foundation. 
Chancellor Barrow, University of Georgia. 

Professor Hoskins was unable to attend on account of illness. 

Dr. Dillard, Chancellor Barrow, and President S. C. Mitchell, of the 
University of South Carolina, were elected as an Advisory Committee. 

The question whether the Commission should permit visitors to attend 
the sessions was considered. An invitation to sit with the Commission was 
extended to such members of the faculty of the University of Georgia as 
Chancellor Barrow should name. It was decided that other persons might 
attend at the invitation of the Commission. 

Such invitation was extended to Mrs. J. D. Hammond, of Georgia; 
Mr. T. J. Woofter, Jr., Phelps-Stokes Fellow at the University of Georgia; 
and Dr. J. E. Spingarn, of New York, for the session on the morning of 
December 20. 

The secretary read a communication from Dr. J. Franklin Jameson, 
director of the Department of Historical Research, Carnegie Institution^ 


Washington, D. C., requesting that the Commission cooperate with him in 
the preparation of a history of the Negro in the United States. The secre 
tary was directed to advise Dr. Jameson that the Commission could not 
comply with his request, but that the members, if consulted individually, 
would be glad to aid him in any way feasible. 

The evening session was devoted to a general discussion of the race ques 
tion. The discussion followed in the main an outline which had been pre 
pared and sent to each member by Dr. Dillard, as follows : 

I. What are the conditions? 

(a) Religious: Contributions, excessive denominationalism, lack of 

the practical in preaching, etc. 

(b) Educational: Self-help, Northern contributions, public schools, 


(c) Hygienic: Whole question of health and disease. 

(d) Economic: Land ownership, business enterprises, abuse 01 

credit system, etc. 

(e) Civic: Common carriers, courts of justice, franchise, etc. 
Changes and tendencies in the above conditions. 

Attitude of Whites. 

II. What should, and can, be done, especially by Whites, for improve 
III. What may be hoped as to future conditions and relations? 

Dr. Dillard gave a short talk and offered suggestions in four main 
divisions, as follows: 

1. The Economic Advance of the Negro. 

(a) Is he advancing? 

(b) Is he meeting with encouragement? 

(c) Do the white people of the South really want the Negro to 

advance ? 

2. Education. 

(a) Are methods as now employed the right ones? 

3. Lynching. 

(a) What is the South's attitude toward lynching? 

(b) Reaction upon Whites worse than effect upon Negroes. 

(c) How may conditions be improved? 

4. Attitude of Southern white people toward the Negro. 

(a) What is it? 


(b) Is it in the main friendly? 

(c) Is the friendly feeling of the Whites toward the Negro growing? 

(d) How may we help to improve conditions in the best interests of 

both races? 

After a round table discussion, in which Chancellor Barrow, Dr. Dillard, 
Chancellor A. A. Kincannon, and every member of the Commission partici 
pated, the session adjourned, to meet again at 9 o'clock next day, December 20. 


In calling the Commission to order, Professor Brough read a paper 
entitled, "Work of the Commission of Southern Universities on the Race 
Question." [Appendix B.] 

The chairman called upon each member of the Commission to tell of his 
own investigations and of his ideas as to plans for the future work of the 

Professor DeLoach said, in part: 

"My investigations seem to show that the Negro is very appreciative of 
good advice and suggestions along all industrial lines, and will assimilate the 
same. By actual demonstration, here in Athens at a farmers' conference, I 
have found that each Negro present will listen closely to advice one season, 
and bring in a report the next season that he made an increase in yield of 
farm crops of from 50 cents to $5 per acre, depending largely upon the 
thriftiness of the individual. One young farmer increased his yield of corn 
in four years from 20 to 100 bushels per acre on a plot of seven acres. I am 
fully persuaded that we can not afford any longer to let the natural resources 
of the South, so generally left in the hands of the Negro, drift into the 
Mississippi River and the Atlantic Ocean. A word to the Negroes may be 
the means of saving millions to the South annually. It requires only one 
generation to waste natural resources in the form of soil that it has taken ages 
to form, and which can not be regained in a hundred years. One way to pre 
vent the waste is to give the Negro, who does his full share of wasting, access 
to scientific methods, especially since he responds so readily to this sort of 
advice. We should find out in dollars and cents just what this advice would 
be worth to the Negro and to the South and to the nation annually. This can 
be done by circulating cards and blanks to be filled in during the spring of 
1913 and the fall of the same year, after the harvest is over. The success of 
this plan will depend largely upon how much work is done this winter in 
advising the Negro. I shall carry out this plan in part if I have to bear the 


whole expense of it. I believe heartily in this method of helping to preserve 
the soil of the South. If each Negro farmer improved annually to the extent 
of only one dollar, the South would be $1,500,000 better off next year. 

"There are figures, that have been carefully worked out, which tend to 
show that Negroes do best when reduced in numbers compared with the 
white population. Dissemination seems to be the only way to make Negroes 
better citizens in industrial, educational, and all other lines. They do best 
where their opportunity to imitate the white people is greatest, and where 
they can get most advice." 

Professor Sutton, of the University of Texas, said of the work of the 
Commission : 

"The problem to be attacked by this Commission is extraordinarily 
complex. The problems of all the institutions of civilized life must be con 
sidered the problems of the home, the church, the school, the State, the 
industrial world, and civil society. In a great measure our work will involve 
a patient and careful examination of actual facts. This examination must be 
made before rational conclusions can be reached. The study of concrete 
situations is absolutely necessary. For example, the study of a community of 
Negroes in Madison County, Texas, will reveal whether the members of that 
community are growing in wealth, in health, and in intellectual, moral, and 
religious power. A single problem that should be studied in this way is that 
of the housing of the Negroes in the South. There are many other problems 
that should be studied in the same manner." 

Professor Doster, of the University of Alabama, presented his ideas as 
to procedure in this way: 

"1. The Commission should gather facts concerning the economic, 
social, religious, and educational conditions of the Negro. 

"2. Should these facts, when collected, warrant such action, the Com 
mission should urge the State universities and other higher institutions of 
learning in the South to offer, through their departments of sociology and 
kindred departments, courses dealing with race relations. 

"3. The elevation of the Negro is chiefly a matter of education. To 
educate the Negro and at the same time promote good feeling between the 
races is a delicate task. Agencies controlled by ideals in accord with the 
spirit of the South should be provided for training Negro ministers, teachers, 
and supervisors of schools. The courses of study in the Negro elementary 
schools should be directly related to the environment of the Negro child and, 
in the main, should be vocational in character. 


"4. It must be borne in mind that any attempt to elevate the Negro 
must be met with a corresponding attempt to improve the condition of the 
poorer white classes of the South. Otherwise racial antagonism will be 
increased rather than diminished." 

Professor Scroggs, of Louisiana State University, said: 
"The four great needs in dealing with our Southern race problems are 
education, cooperation, publicity, and patience. As to education, I believe it 
is highly desirable that a course of instruction in the race question should be 
given in every institution for higher education in the South. In such a course 
it should be the object to place before the students the best thought of repre 
sentative American citizens on this subject, and to assist them in adopting a 
rational viewpoint on all matters concerning interracial relations. This would 
undoubtedly have a good effect, but even then much more will remain to be 
done. The real problem, I believe, is not so much to reach the university stu 
dent as it is to reach the man who lives on Jones' -Creek-at-the-Head-of-the- 
Hollow. He is not influenced by the printed page, but by the spoken word, 
and the only spoken word he ever hears on this subject is from one of his 
own group or from the lips of the demagogue. There is a possible antidote 
for the demagogue at this point in the rural clergyman. In the rural regions 
of the South the power of the pastor is still great, but he is prone to emphasize 
the other-worldiness of Christianity ; his theology needs to be socialized. The 
white churches are doing some work for the improvement of racial relations 
in the cities, but as four-fifths of our colored people live in the country, the 
Negro really presents a problem for the rural church. Ministers, educators, 
and all other influential citizens need to be brought into cooperation so as to 
get the best thought of the country on the Negro problem before the masses 
of the people. It is time that sane Southern sentiments should receive as much 
attention as the blasphemies of the demagogue. We ought, then, to formulate 
a program of cooperation and publicity. 

"And we shall have to practice patience. Whatever progress is achieved 
will come through a process of evolution. It is just as foolhardy to attempt 
to force the mental development of a group as it is to attempt to hasten the 
mental development of a child. No better example of the folly of attempting 
to force the process of social evolution can be given than that shown in the 
history of Reconstruction. But we can aid in the process of evolution by 
helping to increase the Negro's wants. As soon as his wants are satisfied he 
stops work. If his standard of living were higher and this means simply 
more wants to be satisfied he would be a much greater social asset than he is 


to-day. The Negro's legitimate wants can not be increased in a day; they 
must develop by a proper kind of training conducted, perhaps, through 
several generations. This further emphasizes the need of patience." 

Professor Farr, of the University of Florida, said: 

"Fundamental to my plan is the conception that the work we are under 
taking is the work of the eleven Southern State universities, not of the mem 
bers of the Commission as individuals nor even as representatives of their 
various institutions. It is too large a field for investigation by eleven men 
who are all very busy, and if it is to be done at all it can be done only by 
enlisting the resources of the schools in it. 

"The first step should be to break the subject up into its essential lines of 
inquiry and to appoint a committee from our body to head and direct the 
investigation along each of these lines. 

"Second, to have each institution organize a class in sociology to study 
the race problem, largely by the laboratory method, using the town and 
county in which the university is located as the field for investigation. The 
class should be as large as possible and contain representatives from as many 
of the towns and counties of the State as can be secured. 

"The committees of our Commission should formulate lines of inquiry 
and methods of investigation, transmit them to the instructors of these vari 
ous classes, and keep in active communication with these instructors and the 
work of their classes. In this way we shall have, at the end of the school 
year, a body of young men interested in the subject, trained in methods of 
investigation, working under our committees and representing a large part 
of the field under investigation. 

"Third, these students should, during the coming summer, devote a part of 
their time to investigating conditions in their home counties and accumulating 
data after the methods in which they were trained during the school year. 

"The success of such a plan will depend upon several considerations : 
the active sympathy and cooperation of all members of the faculty of the 
university; an enthusiastic presentation of the subject to the student body so 
as to get a large, representative, and able body of students to join the class; 
the ability and zeal of the instructor in charge of the class ; and the energy 
and wisdom of our committees in pushing forward the work. 

"This plan has primarily in view a feasible method of conducting investi 
gations to procure data. It has further advantages of opening up a channel 
through which our future work of formulating results and recommending 
action may be broadly transmitted to the public of our various States." 


Professor Morse, of the University of South Carolina, suggested that the 
Commission should become an agency for the dissemination of authoritative 
information covering the race problem. Also, that the Commission recom 
mend that the Southern colleges and universities send experts and lecturers to 
Negro agricultural and educational meetings, and that courses in the study of 
the race problem be introduced in Southern colleges and universities where 
they are not already offered. 

Professor Bain told of the work being done at the University of North 
Carolina, and Professor Hunley spoke about the investigations under way at 
the University of Virginia. 

The following working committees were appointed by the chairman : 

On Religious Questions Professors Doster, Kennon, 1 and Morse. 

On Educational Questions Professors Sutton, Farr, and Doster. 

On Hygienic Questions Professors Morse, Kennon, and Bain. 

On Economic Questions Professors DeLoach, Hoskins, and Brough. 

On Civic Questions Professors Scroggs, Sutton, and Hunley. 

On Race Adjustment Professors Farr, Bain, and Hunley. 

Professors Brough, Farr, and Hunley were constituted the Executive 

Dr. Spingarn spoke of his pleasure in being permitted to be present, and 
paid high tribute to the value of the Commission's work. 

Mrs. Hammond described her experiences in working among Southern 
Negroes, and Mr. Woofter spoke of his studies as Phelps-Stokes Fellow at 
the University of Georgia. 

The Commission adjourned at 2 p. M., December 20, to meet again at 
Richmond, Va., December 18, 1913. 


The third meeting of the University Commission on Southern Race 
Questions was held on December 18, 19, and 20, 1913. Two sessions were 
held at the Richmond Hotel, Richmond, Va., on December 18, one session at 
Hampton Institute, Hampton, Va., on December 19, and one session at the 
University of Virginia on December 20. 

The first session was called to order by Chairman Brough at 2 p. M., 
December 18, at the Richmond Hotel. Those present were: 

1 Prof. Hedleston, of the University of Mississippi, having resigned, Professor W. 
L. Kennon was appointed in his place. 


Professors James J. Doster, Alabama; C. H. Brough, Arkansas; James 
M. Farr, Florida; R. J. H. DeLoach, Georgia; W. O. Scroggs, Louisiana; 
William L. Kennon, Mississippi; Charles W. Bain, North Carolina; Josiah 
Morse, South Carolina ; W. S. Sutton, Texas ; James D. Hoskins, Tennessee ; 
W. M. Hunley, Virginia; and Drs. S. C. Mitchell and James H. Dillard, of 
the Advisory Committee. 

The secretary read a letter from Dr. J. E. Spingarn requesting the privi 
lege of attending the sessions. After discussion, the secretary was authorized 
to send him a telegram advising him that he would be permitted to sit with 
the Commission at all but executive sessions. 

Dr. Dillard spoke of the opportunity before the Commission of perform 
ing a great service for the South in studying the race question carefully, acting 
deliberately, and speaking, when occasion arose, authoritatively. He said 
there was a feeling in the South of the need of means to speak out on the 
Negro question as contrasted with the means identified with the demagogue. 
Heretofore, he said, the best thought of Southern white people on the Negro 
question had not been expressed. 

An invitation was extended to President R. E. Blackwell, of Randolph- 
Macon College, and Jackson Davis to attend the session. Dr. Mitchell, 
of the Advisory Committee, spoke briefly of the changed conditions in the 
South, especially from the point of view of the attitude of Southern white 
people toward a serious study of race conditions. He said the Commission 
could help matters by fostering a right approach to the consideration of the 
Negro's status in Southern life, and urged moderation and patience in ar 
riving at conclusions. He added that already the influence of the Commission 
was felt in many ways in the Southern States. President Blackwell and Mr. 
Davis spoke briefly of education for Negroes, especially of phases of the 
situation in Virginia. 

Dr. Dillard suggested that the members of the Commission speak as 
representatives of their respective States as to Negro education : Is the senti 
ment for educating the Negro growing in the South ? The answer from every 
member was, in the main, in the affirmative. Special points made by several 
members were: 

Dr. Sutton : Need of better training for Negroes along industrial lines. 
Fit them for the actual life they must lead. There is great need of better 
ways of spending money for Negro education than at present used. Teach 
the Negro the dignity of manual labor, find what is most necessary for his 


happiness as a human being in the world in which he must live, what will best 
conduce to his becoming a good citizen, and emphasize that. Three needs in 
education especially felt: 

1. To know better what to teach the Negro. 

2. To know better how to teach the Negro. 

3. To have better supervision of Negro schools. 

Professor Farr : Comparative tables would be of great service in show 
ing that the amount of money spent on Negro education is comparatively very 

Professor Doster: Greatest obstacle to education of the Negro in 
Alabama is educational condition of the poor white. Can not expect more aid 
to Negro education unless corresponding amount be given to White. But 
general conditions favoring education of Negroes are encouraging. 

Dr. Bain: Sentiment in North Carolina is in favor of educating the 
Negro. The great need is of competent Negro teachers. With competent 
Negro teachers the situation would be greatly improved. 

Professor DeLoach: Sentiment in Georgia good for Negro education, 
but some prejudice among Whites against educated Negro farm hands. Real 
need is of educating white people to the point where they will appreciate the 
increased efficiency of the Negro who has had the benefit of industrial 

Dr. Morse: Some prejudice against Negro education in South Carolina. 
Poor teachers and politics have had much to do with conditions there. 

Dr. Kennon: No distinct sentiment against Negro education in 
Mississippi. Great demand for trained Negro workmen in all lines, so 
emphasis should be put on industrial education. 

After a general discussion the Commission adjourned, to meet again at 
8 o'clock. 


Mrs. B. B. Munford was invited to attend the evening session. She 
spoke about the segregation plan for Richmond, and of the interest of the 
people of Richmond in the aims of the Commission. 

Rion McKissick, of the Times Dispatch, was invited to attend the 
evening session. He spoke briefly of the satisfaction felt by thinking 
Southern people that a body of Southern university men had set about a 
serious study of Southern race conditions, and of the good effect that would 
be sure to follow. 


Dr. Brough read a paper dealing with phases of the economic life of the 

The following tentative reports of committees were submitted in written 
form (others were submitted orally by the chairmen) : 


We are expecting only to give some idea of the present conditions of the 
Negro, and of his economic habits, and to outline a system of investigation 
for the future study of the subject. The figures we find on the subject do 
not satisfy the, conditions of a complete investigation, and it will be our pur 
pose to get statistical data on certain heretofore neglected phases of the 
question, so that we can make the work constructive and consecutive. 

This being our purpose in a general way, we have thought best to classify 
the study as follows: 

The City-Country Population of the Negro. 

Negro Landownership. 

Property Other than Land Owned by Negroes. 

Relation of Negro Holdings to Price of Land. 

The Cropping System. 

Standing Rent System. 

The Probable Basis of Ascendency. 

The Application of Education to the Negro Farmer and Mechanic. 

The Present-Day Organizations for the Economic Uplift of the Negro 


Plan of study : 
I. The Negro and the Federal Government. 

1. Resume of Federal Civil Rights Legislation. 

2. The Federal Government and Negro Suffrage. 

3. The Negro's Rights as an Interstate Passenger. 

4. The Negro's Position as a Government Employe. 
II. The Negro and the State Governments. 

1. State Legislation on the Civil Rights of the Negro. 

2. Separation of Races in: 

(a) Hotels and Restaurants. 

(b) Places of Amusement. 

(c) Churches, Cemeteries, and Eleemosynary Institutions. 

(d) National Guard. 

(e) Public Schools. 


3. The Negro as an Intra- State Passenger. 

4. The Political Status of the Negro. 

(a) Resume of the History of Negro Suffrage. 

(b) Present Status of Suffrage Legislation. 

(c) Actual Operation of Suffrage Laws. 

5. The Negro Before the State Courts. 

(a) As Defendant or Plaintiff. 

(b) As Witness. 

(c) As Lawyer. 

(d) As Juror. 

6. The Negro and the Division of the School Fund. 

7. The Negro and Mob Violence. 

III. The Negro and the Municipal Governments. 

1. Segregation of Races by City Ordinances. 

2. Separation in Street Cars. 

3. The Negro's Share in Public Improvements, e. g., Libraries, 

Parks, Driveways, Playgrounds. 

4. Housing the Negro in Southern Cities. 

5. Policing, Cleaning, and Lighting of Streets in Negro Quarters. 

Following a discussion of reports submitted in writing and orally, the 
Commission adjourned, to meet again at Hampton the following day. 


The Commission left Richmond on the morning of December 19 and 
were met at Hampton by a delegation from Hampton Institute. A trip was 
made over the Institute grounds, and after luncheon a session was held in the 
office of Dr. Hollis B. Frissell, principal of the Institute. Addresses were 
made by Dr. Frissell, members of his staff, Major R. R. Moton, and by several 
members of the Commission. 

Professor Sutton later presented the following: 

"Reactions of members of the University Commission on Race Questions 
in the South to what was seen and heard at Hampton Institute Friday, 
December 19, 1913: 

"1. The principal, the members of the faculty, and the students appear 
to be greatly interested in their work. Their behavior towards one another 
appears natural. The principal and many members of the faculty, though 
white persons engaged in teaching Negroes, do not wear an apologetic air; 
they act as if they were men engaged in a perfectly normal and useful work. 


"2. What impressed me most at Hampton was the conquest of the two 
greatest enemies of the Negro or, for that matter, of any people idleness 
and filth. 

"3. The reaction of Industrial Education on an individual Negro soul; 
Major Moton looking beyond industrialism to justice. 

"4. Efficiency and advantages of industrial education. 

"5. Industriousness, system, cleanliness, earnestness. 

"6. The earnest desire for better relations between the races." 

On December 20, at 11 o'clock A. M., the Commission reconvened at 
Madison Hall, University of Virginia. The following letter was sent by 
President Edwin A. Alderman, who was unable to be present: 

"The so-called race question, which means the right adjustment of rela 
tions between the white man and the colored man in American life, still 
remains perhaps our most complex and momentous public question. On the 
whole, no man can deny that this complex problem has been handled for the 
past thirty years with a great deal of instinctive wisdom by the people of the 
South, and the result of their constructive thought has been acquiesced in by 
the people of the North with remarkable and commendable faith and confi 
dence. The problem, however, is not settled, and probably never will be, but 
may be counted upon to present difficult phases to every generation. Indeed, 
a certain paralysis of feeling about the whole matter, due to exhaustion, I am 
inclined to think, seems to have overtaken both sections, and those who are 
seeking to think quietly about the matter should be grateful for the fact that 
the Negro has somehow gotten off the Southerner's nerves and out of the 
Northerner's imagination. 

"Both sections have turned with unity of effort to bring about a change 
in the spirit and machinery of our democracy, whereby they believe the inter 
est of all the people can best be advanced. It is wise that, in this breathing 
spell, patient, wise, scientific, just men should labor at the problem and seek 
to place it where it belongs among the great economic and sociological ques 
tions of the time." 

The secretary was authorized to send a telegram to President Alderman 
thanking him for his letter and extending to him the Commission's best wishes 
for speedy restoration to health. 

President Alderman was elected to membership on the Advisory Com 


The chairman called upon each member for a short talk about his own 
particular study of Southern race questions. Each one responded. After a 
general discussion the Commission adjourned, to meet again in Washington 
on December 15, 1914. 


The fourth meeting of the Commission was held in Washington, D. C., 
December 14 and 15, 1914. An informal session was held at the Raleigh 
Hotel on the evening of December 14. Those present were: 

Professors C. H. Brough, W. S. Sutton, Josiah Morse, W. L. Kennon, 
James J. Doster, James M. Farr, James D. Hoskins, W. O. Scroggs, Charles 
W. Bain, R. J. H. DeLoach, W. M. Hunley, and Drs. Mitchell and Dillard. 

On the morning of December 15 the members of the Commission were 
received at the White House by President Wilson. Dr. Brough, as chairman, 
was spokesman for the Commission. He explained its purpose and described 
its personnel. In response, President Wilson said : 

"I am very glad to express my sincere interest in this work and sympathy 
with it. I think that men like yourselves can be trusted to see this great ques 
tion at every angle. There isn't any question, it seems to me, into which more 
candor needs to be put, or more thorough human good feeling, than this. I 
know myself, as a Southern man, how sincerely the heart of the South desires 
the good of the Negro and the advancement of his race on all sound and 
sensible lines, and everything that can be done in that direction is of the high 
est value. It is a matter of common understanding. 

"There is a charming story told about Charles Lamb. The conversation 
in his little circle turned upon some men who were not present, and Lamb, 
who, you know, stuttered, said, 'I hate that fellow.' His friend said, 'Charles, 
I didn't know you knew him.' Lamb said, 'I don't; I can't hate a fellow I 

"I think that is a very profound human fact. You can not hate a man 
you know. And our object is to know the needs of the Negro and sympa 
thetically help him in every way that is possible for his good and for our good. 
I can only bid you Godspeed in what is a very necessary and great under 

Leaving the White House, the Commission proceeded to the administra 
tion building of George Washington University, where the members were 
greeted by Admiral Charles H. Stockton, president of the university. The 
first formal session was held at 11 o'clock, Dr. Brough presiding. Admiral 


Stockton made a short address of welcome and spoke of his belief that the 
good of both races could only be attained ultimately by means of such investi 
gation as the Commission was undertaking. 

Dr. Brough called upon President Mitchell, who said that the European 
war had emphasized the fact that there must be something more than racial 
and national sentiment in solving the questions of humanity. "Inclusion, and 
not exclusion, must be the policy pursued in studying race questions," he said. 
He congratulated the Commission on its method of approach, and said that 
nowhere in the South did gloom exist as to the ultimate solution of the prob 
lem upon a broad and just basis. 

Dr. Dillard was the next speaker. He said he was satisfied that there was 
a growing sentiment among white leaders of the South in favor of the educa 
tion of the Negro race; that he had come to realize that there was already a 
large number of able leaders in the colored race itself, and that he believed 
this fact was not recognized generally either in the North or the South. The 
work of the Commission, and among the Y. M. C. A.'s of the South, he be 
lieved to be the most beneficent work on the race question. 

"We do not know," he said, "how many able Negroes, capable and will 
ing to lead their race to better things, there are in the South to-day." He 
added that happily there was a change in the type of white leadership in the 
South in race matters, and that there was a pronounced disposition for 
cooperation between white and black in a great many ways. He concluded by 
saying that he thought one of the biggest benefits that would come from such 
work as the Commission was trying to do would be the stimulation of the 
thought of the younger generation of white men of the South, and urged that 
the whole question of the relation of the races be put on a basis of common 
humanity to replace the relation of master and slave. 

The work of the student holders of the Phelps-Stokes Fellowships estab 
lished at the University of Georgia and the University of Virginia was next 
discussed. The success already attained by this means in interesting Southern 
students in race questions in the right way was so apparent that a committee 
was appointed to draw a resolution to be sent to Mr. Anson Phelps Stokes for 
the consideration of the Phelps-Stokes Trustees, urging that additional Fel 
lowships be established at other Southern universities. Professors DeLoach, 
Hoskins, and Hunley were appointed to compose the resolution. Their re 
port was adopted, as follows : 

"In consideration of the fact that the Phelps-Stokes Fellowships at the 
University of Virginia and the University of Georgia have accomplished most 


excellent results, besides arousing the interest of hundreds of students at those 
institutions in a serious and scientific study of Southern Race Questions, 

"And in view of the growing importance of having first-hand informa 
tion on the present status of race relationship in the South, 

"And in view of the great difficulty of developing methods of securing 
such information on account of the many obstacles that obviously confront 
such investigation, 

"Therefore be it Resolved, That we are in sympathy with the method 
typified by these Fellowships, and 

"Resolved, That we respectfully request the establishment of additional 
Fellowships at other Southern State universities. 


The members of the Commission were the guests of Admiral C. H. 
Stockton and Dr. Charles Monroe, of George Washington University, at 
luncheon at the Cosmos Club. 

The afternoon session was called to order at 3 o'clock. Dr. Thomas 
Jesse Jones, of the Phelps-Stokes Fund, was invited to tell of his work in the 
field of Negro education in the Southern States. He gave an interesting dis 
cussion of various phases of his studies. Before doing so he took occasion to 
speak of his interest in the work of the Commission. He said he was looking 
forward with hope to what it may do, particularly in the way of getting 
young Southern white men to study and take a deep interest in race relation 
ships in a sane and helpful way. He emphasized the importance of getting 
Southern men to tackle the problem, and said the North was beginning to 
have confidence in the Southern people to handle the difficult matter them 
selves. He saw a twofold responsibility and opportunity for the Commission : 
First, to get scientifically accurate information, and, second, to create right 
convictions in the minds of Southern people. 

Dr. Sutton followed Dr. Jones. He said the North and South must 
work the race question out together, or it will never be worked out at all. 
He urged that in the matter of education, especially, the work be undertaken 
from the point of view of the whole citizenship of the State. He argued for 
uniform standards and more attention to the right sort of training for the 
Negro, with a view to making him a more useful member of society. 

Dr. Doster spoke of the difficulty of getting better schools for Negroes 
in the South without at the same time doing as much or more for the poor 
whites. More and better progress was being made in Alabama at this time, 
he said, than at any other time in the field of education for both races. He 


spoke of the transformation that has taken place in school buildings in 
Alabama, and in the condition of school grounds. Negroes themselves, he 
said, are helping wonderfully in all these things for their own schools. In 
matters having to do with sanitation, he said, the improvement in Negro 
schools was especially noticeable. 

Dr. Farr said he was convinced that the white people of the South were 
not opposed to education for the Negro, if they could be convinced that educa 
tion would do the Negro any good. Many white people, he said, are not so 
convinced at this time, and he thought one of the best things the Commission 
could do would be to show those who scoff at the value of education for the 
Negro wherein they are wrong, and to set them right. When the Southern 
white people are convinced that education will help the Negro to be a better 
man and to render a greater service to the South, then, he said, he was sure 
the white people would be willing to divide with the Negro on an equitable 

After hearing from the other members of the Commission as to con 
ditions in their respective States, Dr. Brough read a paper on "Recent Negro 

The concluding session of the meeting was held at the Raleigh Hotel, 
beginning at 8 o'clock in the evening. Dr. Morse proposed a resolution of 
thanks to Admiral Stockton and Dr. Monroe for their hospitality. Such a 
resolution was adopted and forwarded by the secretary. 

Drs. Morse and Kennon, speaking on the work of the Commission, 
believed that perhaps the most effective work the Commission could do would 
be to stimulate the thought of students in Southern universities along sane 
and dispassionate lines in race matters. To this end, they thought the best 
way to proceed would be for each of the members to strive to arouse such 
interest among the students of his own institution. Therefore, they sug 
gested that such available funds as the Commission might have should be 
divided among the several members and used by them as prizes for creditable 
work in race investigation by their own students. Dr. Hoskins, Dr. Bain, 
and others shared this view, emphasizing their belief that the most important 
service any organization could perform at this time was to bring young men 
of the South to a better understanding of the Negro, and to encourage them 
to study questions affecting the Negro in the proper way. Dr. Hoskins stated 
that at the University of Tennessee this sort of work had been going on for 
some time, and students who a short time ago were indifferent, if not antago 
nistic, to such study, were now alive to the need of a right understanding of 
race conditions, and were reading books and making investigations in a way 


that would have been thought impossible a few years ago. The Commission 
could not do better than stimulate this sort of thing among students of the 
South, he said, and he proposed that until the next meeting each member 
devote as much time as possible to efforts to stir up his own students. He 
referred to results already apparent, and, as evidence of the new spirit among 
Southern students, he read a report entitled, "The Economic Condition of the 
Negroes of Knoxville." prepared by Mr. R. G. San ford, a student at the 
University of Tennessee. [Appendix E.] 

Dr. Scroggs said that last year, students at Louisiana State University 
had, for the first time, done actual work among the Negroes of Baton Rouge 
in an effort to understand conditions. He said they had organized a club for 
the study and discussion of race questions, and many of the best students 
showed great interest in the work. 

Dr. Kennon reported that at Mississippi the Y. M. C. A. had undertaken 
similar study and had enlisted the active cooperation of many of the leading 

Dr. ' Farr stated that at Florida a three-hour course in Southern race 
questions had been started with great promise, and that university credit was 
being given for creditable work done. He mentioned fourteen students who 
were actively engaged in this field, where a short time ago there were no stu 
dents at all at work. 

Similar reports were made concerning student activity at Virginia, 
Georgia, South Carolina, Texas, and North Carolina. 

It was agreed that until the next meeting the Commission apply itself 
chiefly to efforts to bring the students of the South to a realization of the 
need of studying race questions scientifically and sympathetically. 

The next subject discussed was that of publication. Dr. Morse spoke of 
the danger of haste, and urged that the Commission think well and long 
before speaking officially. Care should be exercised, he said, in giving to the 
public statements that might be taken as coming from the Commission as a 
body. He suggested the appointment of an editorial board, which should 
serve as an agency to assemble such facts as the Commission should decide 
to publish, and give them out. The Commission adopted this suggestion and 
appointed the secretary to serve temporarily in this capacity. 

Dr. Brough next called for reports from the various committees. Drs. 
Morse, Bain, and Kennon spoke of improved hygienic conditions among the 


Negroes of their respective localities, Dr. Bain referring especially to a "clean 
up week" undertaken with great success by the Negroes of Chapel Hill, N. C. 

Dr. Doster, in his report on religious conditions among the Negroes of 
Alabama, laid stress on the lack of cooperation between white and Negro 

Drs. Sutton, Doster, and Farr submitted a report for the Committee on 

Dr. DeLoach, in his report for the Committee on Economic Phases of 
the Negro Question, gave a stimulating review of the improvement in the 
earning capacity of Negroes in Georgia, especially Negro farmers, in the last 
three years. He said this earning capacity had increased from 10 to 33 per 
cent in that period. He spoke of canning clubs among colored boys and 
girls, and of the good results attained in this and other ways. Young Negro 
farmers were anxious to learn improved methods, he said, and readily fol 
lowed the advice of their white neighbors and friends. He discussed the 
tenant system, and then told of his plans for the coming year, which would 
aim to get accurate information as to economic conditions among the Georgia 

Dr. Scroggs, chairman of the Committee on Civic Relations, submitted a 
report on that subject. [Appendix C.] 

The Commission then had a very frank discussion as to the general out 
look. Each member gave his personal views. Some expressed doubt that, 
outside of the highly intelligent classes of white people, there was among the 
Southern white people any real desire to help the Negro advance to better 
conditions of living. Others believed that there was a disposition to help the 
Negro, provided it could be demonstrated to the satisfaction of the white 
people that such aid really did the Negro good, made him a better worker and 
a better citizen. All agreed that the most pressing need at present was to 
educate the Southern white people. To do this, one of the most effective 
agencies at hand was believed to be the Commission, working through 
Southern students who could, if they would, transform the average white 
man's attitude toward the Negro in the near future. Patience, however, it 
was emphasized, was absolutely necessary, as well as care and lack of haste in 
reaching conclusions. 

A resolution was adopted extending an invitation to Mr. Anson Phelps 
Stokes to meet with the Commission at Montgomery, Ala., on May 5. 

The Commission adjourned at 12:45 A. M., December 16. 


MAY 5, 6, AND 7, 1915 

The fifth meeting of the Commission was called to order at 3 p. M., May 
5, 1915, at the Exchange Hotel, Montgomery, Ala. Dr. DeLoach occupied 
the chair and was chosen chairman for the meeting in place of Dr. Brough, 
who was absent. The members present were : 

Professors Hoskins, Kennon, Morse, Doster, Scroggs, DeLoach, Hunley, 
and Dr. Dillard. 

Absent: Dr. Brough, Dr. Farr, and Dr. Sutton. 

The chair welcomed Prof. E. C. Branson, of the University of North 
Carolina, as a member of the Commission, succeeding Dr. Charles W. Bain, 
who died last winter. 

The chair also welcomed Dr. J. Carleton Bell, of the University of Texas, 
who represented that institution at the meeting in place of Dr. Sutton, who 
was prevented by illness from attending. 

Dr. Farr, of the University of Florida, sent word of his regret in being 
unavoidably prevented from being present, as did Dr. Brough. 

The chair appointed a committee, consisting of Professors Scroggs, 
chairman; Hoskins, and the secretary, to compose a minute on the death of 
Dr. Bain. The following was presented as the report of this committee and 
was adopted : 

"The University Commission on Southern Race Questions, having heard 
with profound regret of the death of one of its members, Charles Wesley 
Bain, of the University of North Carolina, desires, at its session in Mont 
gomery, Ala., on May 5, 1915, to record its appreciation of his services in 
connection with this organization, and to express its sympathy with the 
bereaved family and with the faculty of the University which he so ably 

"By his genial disposition and personal charm Professor Bain endeared 
himself to the members of this Commission, and his death brings to each of 
them a sense of keen personal loss. 

"It is hereby ordered that a copy of this testimonial be spread upon the 
minutes of this Commission, and that a copy be forwarded to Professor Bain's 
family and to the faculty of the University of North Carolina. 

"Committee : 

W. O. SCROGGS, Chairman, 


University of North Carolina 

University of Arkansas University of Gcoryia 

*Died March 15, 1915. 
fNow Governor of the State. 
JNow residing in Chicago. 


The secretary sent a copy of this minute to Mrs. Bain and to newspapers 
in North and South Carolina and Norfolk, Va. It was printed in these papers 
and was, in addition, made the basis of editorial comment in two of them. It 
was also printed in publications of the University of North Carolina, the Uni 
versity of South Carolina, and the University of Virginia. 

Dr. Dillard was asked by the chair to start discussion. He spoke of the 
importance the race question in the South was assuming, and said that it was 
becoming more and more important from every point of view as time passed. 
He had once thought it well, perhaps, to let it drop from active discussion for a 
few years, but this was impossible in view of the fact that ill-disposed people 
will talk, so the well-disposed must talk about it. Speaking of the Commis 
sion, he said it was a real force and had already justified its existence. He 
thought the reflex influence of the Commission on the thought and attitude of 
young men in Southern colleges and universities was of great value. If we 
could look back to this time from twenty-five years hence, he said, we should 
not be ashamed of the part the Commission played. The immediate job before 
us, however, he said, was to get the better class of white people in the South 
interested in the race question so interested that they would feel the need of 
speaking out frankly when occasion required. As to the future work of the 
Commission, he doubted whether it should attempt, except so far as it might 
use college students, to be an investigating body. Data can be better collected, 
and will be collected, by other agencies more adequately prepared for such 
work. The Commission should study these facts and use them. The Com 
mission, furthermore, he said, should hear from as many persons as possible 
who are interested in Southern race matters. He suggested that a meeting 
be held in the North at some future time, so that the members of this body 
might get the point of view, first hand, of people up there who are thinking 
along the same general line. 

The chair welcomed Dr. W. D. Weatherford, of the Y. M. C. A., and 
Mr. J. L. Sibley, State Rural School Agent in Alabama. 

Dr. Weatherford spoke of the influence of college professors on the 
thought of students, and saw in that a source of great service on the part of 
the Commission. He said much progress had been made in the last five years 
in race conditions in the South. Institutions of learning, both for white and 
black, he said, were doing an important work in bringing speakers to address 
their students on the subject, and he commended those institutions that have 
incorporated courses in race study in the curriculum. The Negroes them 
selves, he said, were beginning to study in a serious way their own problems. 
He stated that there was a decided increase in the interest taken in race ques- 


tions by Southern college women who heretofore have been pessimistic about 
the whole thing and loath to take personal part in studying any phase of it. 
Now, he said, about 1,500 Southern college women are actively engaged in 
the study, and there are about 5,000 Southern college men similarly employed. 
One difficulty, he said, was to get white and colored people to come together 
and talk the thing over. Such conferences he thought essential to a full under 
standing of different points of view and relative needs. But, in spite of the 
difficulty, a number of such meetings between white citizens and leading 
colored men are held every year in Southern communities. One of the great 
est needs at present, he said, was to induce Southern white people to realize 
that they bear a heavy responsibility to the Negro. Leading white people of 
the South, and the best colored people, he said, are putting much faith in the 
attitude of college men, and that is where this Commission can render its 
greatest service, namely, in giving Southern students a right point of view. 

Mr. Sibley spoke briefly about the Negro schools in Alabama. He stated 
that in Alabama there was very little opposition to the vocational idea in 
Negro education, and that there was not much opposition to the Negro buying 
land. "Our experience is," he said, "that when the Negro owns land he is a 
better citizen, because it gives him a real stake in the county. Least race fric 
tion is to be found in counties where the Negro owns land." He also said 
that there was a widespread improvement in the attitude of Southern white 
people toward the Negro. "In many small communities white citizens are 
earnestly trying to help the Negroes from the point of view of civic, moral, 
economic, and educational progress. In Montgomery," he added, "the Civic 
League of the white people and a similar league composed of leading Negroes 
work together admirably. This sort of thing," he said, "is going on quietly 
in the South to a much greater extent than is generally recognized." 

Mr. J. Wyatt Rushton, of the University of Alabama, was presented to 
the Commission. He spoke of his work in Tuscaloosa in studying the status 
of the Negro artisan. He seemed to think that, in the main, the white artisan 
was driving the skilled Negro out. 

There followed a general discussion dealing with the objects of the Com 
mission, how it should conduct its work, and what that work should be; also 
with the question of land ownership by Negroes, and whether there is really 
any improvement, fundamentally, in the desire of the great mass of Southern 
people to see the Negro better educated and to have him become a better citi 
zen. Further discussion was reserved for a later session. 

Before adjournment, Dr. Hoskins presented a report about work being 
done at the University of Tennessee under the direction of Prof. T. W. 


Glocker, of that University, in investigating housing conditions, economic wel 
fare, and insurance among the Negroes of Knoxville. 

The second session was convened at 8 o'clock. Professor Branson 
started discussion with a review of efforts in North Carolina, chiefly under 
the direction of University people, in trying to aid the Negro. He spoke par 
ticularly of the Negro community sanitation survey in North Carolina, one of 
the first and best-conducted surveys of the kind ever undertaken. Referring 
to the work of the Commission, he said it had not yet broken into the student 
life of the South as it should. He suggested that a syllabus, consisting of 
15 or 20 problems, be prepared and sent to civic clubs, literary societies, 
Y. M. C. A.'s, etc., of the Southern colleges, with the request that students be 
put to work on those problems. In this way, he thought, the influence of the 
Commission might be widely spread and a large number of students be 
brought into the field of actual investigation, the result being a better point of 
view for them. Something similar to this had been done, he said, through the 
debating clubs of the University of North Carolina. 

This suggestion of preparing a syllabus was favorably received by the 
Commission, and it was moved that it be discussed at length at a later meeting. 

Dr. Bell, after presenting Dr. Sutton's regrets and good wishes to the 
Commission, discussed race conditions in Texas. The race question there, he 
said, was complicated by the presence of Mexicans and others in addition to 
the Negroes, and the matter was made more difficult by reason of that fact. 
The most important and encouraging progressive step in Texas in recent 
years, he said, was the passage of a compulsory education law. "It will not 
be universally enforced," he said, "but it furnishes a rallying point for every 
one interested in public education of all the people, irrespective of race." 
There was a general feeling in Texas, he believed, for education of Negroes, 
provided as much, or more, were done for Whites at the same time. "There 
are a great many, however," he said, "who still sincerely oppose education of 
the Negro." He spoke of efforts now being made by a number of white edu 
cators to have Negro schools put on the same basis as schools for white 
children. "The biggest problem in Texas," he said, "is to induce the white 
people to accept the Negro on the basis of what he can do." 

The chair introduced Superintendent Feagin, of Alabama. He said 
Alabama had more of a white problem than a Negro problem from the school 
point of view. Last year, he said, the school attendance of Negroes was one 
per cent better than of Whites. He thought conditions in Alabama were far 
better than they had ever been, and were improving steadily ; but he said the 
Negro was not yet getting a square deal in educational support. Alabama's 


real problem, he said, was concerned with ignorant, prejudiced white people, 
who were apparently incapable of seeing any ultimate value in educating the 
Negro. "We do not need compulsory education for Negroes," he said, "but 
we do need it for white people." 

Jackson Davis, of Virginia, gave a short review of conditions in Vir 
ginia. He thought the political issue was becoming less and less important, 
and that the land-tenure question was looming up with grave possibilities of 
friction between the races. He also said a need that was widely felt at present 
was for secondary schools for Negro teachers. 

In the course of general discussion, the impression seemed to be that as 
the Negro in the South improved in educational and economic well-being the 
danger of friction increased. Also, that as there was less friction on this 
account, and less probability of it, in rural communities, the Negro should be 
induced, if possible, to stay in the country. 

The chair called on members of the Commission individually to tell of 
conditions in their respective states. These reports showed, in the main, that 
while much remained to be done, and many of the white people of the 
South were apparently more or less indifferent, if not opposed, to Negro 
progress, yet there was decided improvement and faith in greater progress 
in the immediate future. 

William H. San ford, of the Montgomery bar, accepted an invitation to 
address the Commission, but was called away unexpectedly. He sent the 
paper he had prepared, which was read by the secretary. 

The Commission adjourned to Tuskegee, where the third session was 
called to order in Tantum Hall at 11 A. M. next day, May 6. 

Dr. Booker T. Washington attended two sessions. He made a short 
address of welcome and answered questions asked by members of the 

Dr. Washington said colored people were glad that the Commission was 
identified with the race study movement. The Commission, he said, was 
making it easier for others to work for the uplift of the Negro. He was 
especially glad that the Commission was composed of teachers. "Right pub 
lic sentiment at educational centers will go far indeed." The most trouble 
some thing in the South, he said, was distorted relations and reports. "If we 
could get the actual facts as to race relations in the South before the public," 
he said, "we should get along pretty well with conditions as they are. The 
trouble is, most Southern white people do not know the facts about the Negro. 
They get their information largely in roundabout ways. "I think," he con- 


tinued, "that we are nearing the end of political opposition to the Negro as 
expressed in party platforms. The Negro has put as many men into office as 
he can afford to do, and I hope the last one has ridden in on the back of the 
Negro. It is a hopeful sign that the Negro is ceasing to be an independent 
political issue. 

"Some white people seem to think that the Negro is trying to edge into 
political control and social equality. As a matter of fact, such questions are 
scarcely ever discussed among Negroes. One very essential thing is to remove 
from the minds of white people the idea that the Negro is ambitious for 
political and social control. The fact is that as the Negro becomes educated 
he finds increasing satisfaction among the members of his own race. If white 
people would pop unexpectedly into Negro homes they would be surprised at 
the conditions there, and would then understand why the Negro finds satis 
faction in his own home circle. 

"Our great problem now is to get ordinary white men to favor Negro 
education. If the vast number of Negroes are to be educated at all, it must 
be in the rural public schools. White men will vote funds for Negro education 
just in proportion to their belief in the value of that education. Educational 
and political leaders must, and do, consider the opinion of the average white 
man, so the big problem is how to convince him. When he knows the facts 
about the value to the whole country, as well as to the Negro himself, of edu 
cation, he must be convinced. We are trying to instil into the Negro mind 
that if education does not make the Negro humble, simple, and of service to 
the community, then it will not be encouraged. When the white people know 
that the Negro understands this, I feel that much of the opposition now 
encountered will disappear. And all the time we ought to remember that the 
Negro is just beginning to understand the meaning of education. Let us try 
to make progress in the big, fundamental things; the little jolts will then 

"This Commission is working in the right direction, and, I believe, is 
going as fast as it ought to go. Its present policy, as I understand it, is right. 

"As to the influence of the educated Negro on the uneducated, while it 
is not true here, yet in many large cities it is a fact that the educated Negroes 
are weaned away from the masses and grow very sensitive in many cases. 
We should try to keep the young, educated Negro from becoming bitter in 
his attitude toward people and things in general. Therefore, I believe in 
industrial education, which tends to make the Negro lose himself in his job. 
He does not then have so much opportunity to become bitter. 


"We hope for great things from the young, educated white people of the 
South. Here is another point of contact between the Commission and the 
best work that is being done. If white Southern college men and women get 
the right point of view they will not fail to see the importance of educating 
all the people, white and black. 

"Large landowners who oppose Negro education are growing fewer in 
number. Some of them are actually supporting students at Tuskegee. 

"The railroads are giving more attention to the comfort and convenience 
of Negro passengers. There is great improvement and encouragement in that 

"There is little, if any, opposition, generally speaking, to the Negro buy 
ing land. If the Negro has the money, his greatest difficulty is to get out of 
the way of the white man who has land to sell. 

"Capable Negro artisans have no difficulty getting jobs under favorable 
conditions. The graduates of Tuskegee are having no trouble at all. Those 
who fear increased friction when the Negro becomes better educated and 
better trained to take part in skilled occupations overlook the fact that all the 
time white public opinion is getting broader and broader too. Some friction, 
however, is bound to come in this transition period. It is sure to end, how 
ever, in a readjustment on a higher plane. 

"Colored people feel very keenly about the way crime committed, or 
alleged to have been committed, by Negroes is played up in the newspapers. 
We never see the Negro's good qualities mentioned. As a rule, when a 
Negro's name appears in the newspapers he has done something to somebody, 
or somebody has done something to him. It may be true that the newspaper's 
attitude toward the Negro does not influence white public opinion as much as 
the Negro thinks, but it is bound to affect the point of view of those white 
people who do not know the Negro." 

Dr. Washington concluded by saying that he spoke for the educated 
Negroes of the country when he commended the aim of the Commission and 
its present methods. He said he knew that already the mere use of the 
names of the members, as representatives of Southern State universities, had 
been a source of great encouragement to those who were working to bring 
about a permanent basis for race adjustment in the South. 

Twelve members of the staff of Tuskegee attended the morning session. 
Each one spoke briefly of the attitude of the educated Negro, which, though 
pessimistic in many instances, was, on the whole, hopeful. They seemed par 
ticularly eager to effect a better understanding between the educated white 
man and the educated Negro. 


Others who addressed the Commission were Superintendent W. B. Riley, 
of Macon County, Emmett J. Scott, and Prof. W. T. B. Williams. 

The Commission was taken by automobile over the farm at Tuskegee, 
and then on an inspection tour of the buildings, class sections, and shops. 

The members of the Commission were the guests of honor at an assembly 
in the main auditorium on the night of May 6. Addresses were made by 
Dr. Washington, Dr. Dillard, Professors Scroggs, Branson, and DeLoach. 

The closing session was held in Tantum Hall on the afternoon of May 7. 

The chairman of the Committee on Economic Conditions of Negroes in 
the South submitted a report. [Appendix D.] 

It was decided to have the office of chairman of the Commission filled 
annually. Dr. Sutton was chosen chairman of the next meeting, time and 
place being left for selection to a committee composed of the chairman, Dr. 
Dillard, and the secretary. 

The secretary was authorized to purchase a gift to be sent in the name 
of the Commission to Tantum Hall as an expression of the Commission's 
appreciation of the hospitality extended by the matron and young women of 
that hall. The secretary sent a silver flower stand, suitably inscribed, in care 
of Dr. Washington, from whom he received a cordial letter of acknowledg 

The last hour and a half of the last session were devoted to a frank dis 
cussion of plans of the Commission for the future. 

Dr. Scroggs submitted an outline for investigation as to the civic status 
of the Negro. 

Dr. Bell spoke of work being done in Texas by students under the direc 
tion of Dr. Sutton, some of whose advanced students were engaged in making 
surveys of two colleges for Negroes in Austin Tillotson and Samuel Huston 
colleges. The president of the former is a white man, and nearly all the 
members of the faculty belong to the white race; while the president and the 
members of the faculty of the latter are Negroes. "The survey," said Dr. 
Bell, "is to include the more important items bearing upon school efficiency, 
such as the school plant, organization and administration, the teachers, the 
pupils, the course of study, and finances. Among the minor problems which 
the young men will attempt to solve is the relative ability of full-blood Negroes 
and mulattoes as disclosed in their school work. Especial attention is to be 
given to the operation of dormitories. A still more comprehensive problem is 
to determine what need exists for each of the schools, and to what extent that 
need is being satisfied. Effort will be made to find out, if possible, what are 


the definite aims which the management of each of these schools is seeking to 
realize. Another problem of great difficulty centers around the course of 
study. Is each of these schools offering such culture material as will help to 
relate the students to their future environment ? In a word, it is the purpose 
of the survey to discover to what extent each of these schools is functioning 
in the preparation of colored students for rational, effective service." 

Dr. Kennon, Dr. Morse, Dr. Hoskins, Dr. Branson, and Dr. DeLoach 
described investigations and studies by students at their respective universities 
and by others in their respective communities. 

The Commission adjourned at 5 P. M., May 7, 1915. 


The sixth meeting of the Commission was called to order at the Mai- 
bourne Hotel, Durham, N. C., on the morning of January 4, by the chairman, 
Dr. W. S. Sutton. All the members were present except Dr. Farr and 
Dr. Kennon. 

Dr. Dillard presented a note from President W. P. Few, of Trinity Col 
lege, on behalf of some of the leading colored business men of Durham, in 
viting the Commission to hold a session at the North Carolina Mutual and 
Provident Association building. The invitation was accepted. 

Dr. Dillard had proposed that a copy of the minutes of the meeting held 
at Tuskegee be sent Mr. Anson Phelps Stokes. This was done, and a reply 
from Mr. Stokes stated that he was greatly pleased with the sort of work 
the Commission was doing, and that he appreciated the thought in bringing it 
to his attention in this way. 

The chief business considered at the Durham meeting was a proposed 
letter on lynching to be addressed to the college men of the South. The draft 
submitted by Dr. Morse was taken up a paragraph at a time and carefully 
considered from every point of view. The draft, with amendments, was 
referred to a committee composed of Dr. Morse, Dr. Scroggs, and Dr. 
DeLoach for final wording, and when reported to the Commission was 
adopted and ordered published. [Appendix A (I).] 

A copy of the letter was sent to the Associated Press, and copies were 
sent by telegraph to the leading Southern and several Northern newspapers. 
Four hundred copies were later sent to college, university, denominational, 
and other papers, and to libraries and other institutions. As far as the secre 
tary was able to learn, the letter was widely circulated through the press and 


was printed in many college papers. It was favorably commented upon edi 
torially in many instances, and in some was highly commended. 

Rev. Dr. E. R. Leyburn, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of 
Durham, was a guest at the afternoon session. He spoke briefly in commen 
dation of the aim of the Commission, and the influence it must have, not only 
in bringing about a wiser consideration of race questions in the South, but 
also in the general way of encouraging open discussion of all matters of vital 
public interest. He thought the Commission would exert a helpful influence 
in destroying an undoubted aloofness that had grown up between the college 
and the community in many parts of the South. "The college," he said, 
"should be an aid to the community in handling all public questions," and he 
believed the University Commission was already rendering service in making 
possible greater cooperation between the college and the community, and a 
better understanding of each other's point of view. He said the Commission 
was helping to put the colleges in the right relation to the masses of the 
people. "When it is understood," he said, "that the college can and will help, 
not only its own crowd, but the people at large as well, the mass of the people 
will rally to its support and will fall in behind public movements championed 
by the college." 

The evening session was held in the board rooms of the North Carolina 
Mutual and Provident Association. This is an insurance and banking com 
pany whose officers and directors are the leading colored men of Durham, 
twelve of whom were present. President Few, of Trinity College, accom 
panied the Commission and took part in the meeting. Dr. Sutton called on 
several of the colored men present to speak to the Commission frankly on any 
topic that was of particular interest to them. Three subjects were empha 
sized segregation, education, and industry. 

Dr. A. M. Moore spoke of segregation and its effect on the Negro and 
on the white man in the South. He said that the Negro objected to the treat 
ment he received after segregation was accomplished. "The Negro," he said, 
"prefers to live to himself. Segregation will always follow naturally, pro 
vided the treatment given the Negro in the way of paving, sewerage, and 
general conditions of life is reasonably decent. Even here in Durham, where 
we have had no trouble at all about this question, the Negro section is poorly 
paved, where paved at all ; the lighting is miserable, and the sewerage question 
is so inadequately handled that conditions are a menace to health. It is only 
natural that, in view of this situation, which seems to be general, the Negro 
should look with disfavor on the idea of segregation. We naturally segregate 
ourselves. All we ask is justice." 


Dr. Moore pointed out how dangerous to the safety and health of the 
white people of a community was this neglect of the section occupied by 
Negroes. "The Negro section of many a Southern town," he said, "is a 
breeding place for germs of disease and crime, largely because of miserable 
sanitary and housing conditions." 

Dr. Moore also spoke of Negro education, and said the greatest need 
felt among Southern Negroes at this time was that of competent teachers. 
"The teachers," he said, "are so poorly prepared and paid that the Negro 
schools are seriously handicapped. The Negroes of Durham are working 
hard to improve this condition, but not much can be done without the help of 
the white people." 

C. C. Spaulding, general manager of the North Carolina Mutual and 
Provident Association, spoke of the industrial growth of the Negroes in 
North Carolina. He estimated that the assessed valuation of property 
owned by Negroes in North Carolina had increased more than 30 per cent in 
the last year. Also, that the Negroes of Durham alone paid taxes last year 
on $500,000 assessment. He said the Negro owed much to the kindly counsel 
of his white friends, and he believed the white business men of Durham were 
as proud of the progress the Negroes were making as the Negroes themselves 
were. This feeling, he said, was especially noticeable among the young white 
men, which, he said, was a most encouraging sign from the point of view of 
cordial relationship. He believed conditions in Durham were exceptional, but 
he thought there was general improvement throughout the South, with a few 
exceptions here and there. 

John Merrick, said to be the wealthiest Negro in the Carolinas, in the 
course of an unusually interesting talk, said the members of the Commission 
would never know how great was the encouragement felt by the thinking 
Negroes of the South when they learned that a number of Southern college 
and university professors were taking the trouble to go about the South, 
encourage white and colored men to meet together and talk frankly about 
their mutual problems, and hear both sides of the much-misunderstood race 
question. He said he was sure he spoke for thousands of influential Negroes 
when he said that no single thing had occurred in the South in many years 
that had had such a stimulating effect on the thinking Negroes as the organi 
zation of a body of Southern college men with the object, among others, of 
encouraging open and unprejudiced consideration of all matters affecting 
both races. 

The meeting was concluded with an informal round table question and 
answer discussion, in which the members of the Commission, President Few, 
Dr. Ley burn, and several of the Negroes present took part. 


The morning session on the 5th of January was held at Trinity College. 
In addition to President Few, the following members of Trinity College 
faculty were present and spoke briefly about various phases of the race 
question : 

W. K. Boyd, Professor of History ; E. C. Brooks, Professor of Educa 
tion; W. F. Laprade, Professor of Political Science; R. L. Flowers, Pro 
fessor of Mathematics, and W. H. Glasson, Professor of Economics. 

Professor Brooks spoke of a school survey which he had recently com 
pleted in Durham. One of the results of this survey, he said, was the 
discovery that the teeth and eyes of the Negro school children were in much 
better condition than were those of the white school children. It was also 
found, he said, that the Negro children were far more proficient at manual 
exercises than the white children, and that the white children excelled in 
academic studies. He believed that home conditions had much to do with 
these results, and not incapacity on the part of Negro children to master book 
learning. A culture background, be believed, was essential in most cases to 
progress with book studies for both white and black, and he believed the lack 
of such background was responsible largely for the failure of Negro children 
to measure up well in comparison with white children. But these conclusions, 
he said, were tentative, and he recommended a wide survey of the whole 
South, which might, he said, shed light on the question concerning the wisest 
way to use funds voted for educational purposes to the best advantage of 
both white and black. 

Professor Boyd said he was surprised to find how eagerly his students 
at Trinity went about the study of race questions when given topics bearing 
on the general subject for discussion as class exercises. He thought this 
practice should be encouraged at all Southern colleges. Southern college men, 
he said, should be brought face to face in a scholarly way with the race 
problem, and he said he had found essay writing, with such subjects as segre 
gation, education of Negroes, manual training versus book learning, the 
Negro in politics, the colored church, the colored minister as a leader, the 
Negro business man, the Negro and the trade union, the Negro club, social 
and beneficial, etc., both interesting to the student and productive of good 

Professor Laprade thought the Negro should be taught to have race 
pride, to be proud to be a Negro. Economic independence, he said, and what 
Dr. Dillard had referred to as a new attitude on the part of the white man 
namely, to treat the Negro man to man, and not as master and servant were 
the most desirable aids to this race pride. 


Professor Glasson said factory life in the South showed that the Negro 
was not holding his own industrially. "The Negro can not live a decent life," 
he said, "without the opportunity to earn and the desire to have decent living." 

President Few said he was again impressed with one great service the 
Commission could perform, and that was to induce thoughtful white men of 
the South to have the courage to do the right thing in dealing with the 
Negroes in their communities. "Washington Duke's attitude toward the 
Negro," he said, "did much to make possible the excellent conditions between 
the races in Durham." 

The following telegram from Clarence H. Poe was received and read to 
the Commission: 

"Keenly regret inability to accept your invitation. I should like to 
emphasize that there are three parties to the race problem first, the Negro; 
second, the wealthy or professional white man unaffected by Negro competi 
tion; third, the poor, laboring white man who does, and must, face such 
competition. I would not have less sympathy or thought for the Negro, but 
more for the disadvantaged white man. Hope your Commission will study 
this third factor, and also inquire if separate grouping does not encourage 
better Negro leadership and community life; also make a study of mulatto 
traits and achievements as distinguished from pure Negro, and inquire to 
what extent mulattoes are increasing." 

A paper, dealing with "Booker T. Washington as a Leader in the Field 
of Negro Education in the South," was presented by Professor Doster. 

The Commission then adjourned, to meet again in the afternoon at 
Chapel Hill. 

After dinner at the home of Professor Branson a meeting was held in 
Peabody Hall, University of North Carolina. The following members of the 
faculty of the University were present and took part in the discussions : 

Dean M. H. Stacy; Dean C. L. Raper, Professor of Economics; H. W. 
Chase, Professor of Psychology; Archibald Henderson, Professor of Pure 
Mathematics; M. C. S. Noble, Professor of Pedagogy; T. J. Wilson, As 
sociate Professor of Latin; K. P. Battle, Professor Emeritus of History; J. 
G. deR. Hamilton, Professor of History; E. L. Rankin, of the Department 
of University Extension, and H. H. Williams, Professor of Philosophy. 

President E. K. Graham sent a cordial letter of welcome, in which he ex 
pressed keen regret that an engagement in New York prevented his being 


Professor Williams spoke of the inadequate pay and training of Negro 
school teachers. He said he was almost ready to state as his belief that many 
Negro teachers who were available were worse than no teachers at all. 

Professor Chase said too few facts were available as to relative mental 
ability of white and black school children. He thought a very helpful thing 
would be a careful psychological study of white and black school children, 
with the object of finding out, if possible, how the education of the children 
of both races should be directed. He felt sure, he said, that through ignorance 
a great deal of time and money was being wasted. 

Dr. Battle spoke earnestly against segregation. He said that he believed 
segregation made matters worse wherever and however it was tried. As to 
rural segregation specifically, he said he believed a Negro neighbor was a 
decided help rather than a hindrance to the white man. 

Professor Hamilton said there was widespread ignorance throughout the 
country of the rural Negro. Permanent improvement in the lot of the Negro 
in the South, he said, can only come after we understand the Negro who lives 
not in the cities or the more or less thickly populated sections, but away off in 
the country. We'll never get far in this business, he said, until we know the 
point of view of the genuine common country Negro, and we know little, if 
anything, about him now. 

Professor Wilson said the University of North Carolina was beginning, 
with much success, to include the Negro in the work of the extension depart 
ment. Bible classes and reading clubs were conducted by students, he said, 
and were largely attended by the Negroes of Chapel Hill and vicinity. The 
students, he said, showed lively interest in the work. 

Professor Henderson spoke of the fact that the Negro youth of ability 
was constantly being drawn away from the South. He believed that the edu 
cated Negro youth would be of great service if kept at home. One reason 
why the educated, progressive young Negroes leave the South, he said, was 
the lack of sympathy and encouragement from their white neighbors. "We 
do not seem to get the point of view," he said, "of the educated young Negro 
to-day. We don't understand him. This lack of understanding breeds dis 
trust. On the other hand, the ignorant Negro is still exploited in many ways 
by white men. We must try to protect the ignorant Negro from his own 
ignorance, and also we must try to make it worth while for the young Negro 
of the better sort to stay in the South." 

Dean Stacy said he believed the political question was settling itself, as 
segregation and other questions would if permitted to .be worked out natu 
rally. "Negroes vote here in Chapel Hill," he said, "and there is no white 
opposition at all, so far as I know." 


At the business session Professor Hoskins was unanimously elected 
chairman for the next meeting. 

It was decided to hold the next meeting late in August, the exact time 
and place to be fixed by the chairman and Dr. Dillard. This meeting, it was 
decided, should last at least three days, when the work of the Commission and 
its usefulness in the future might be fully discussed. 

The conference adjourned at 3 :30 P. M., January 5. 

AUGUST 30, 31, AND SEPTEMBER 1, 1916 

The seventh meeting of the Commission was called to order in Lee Hall, 
Blue Ridge, N. C., at 10 A. M., August 30, 1916, by the chairman, Professor 
Hoskins. Mr. C. F. Quillian, representing Dr. Weatherford, welcomed the 
Commission to Blue Ridge. He made particular reference to the class con 
ducted by Dr. Branson at Blue Ridge, and stated that the meeting of the 
Commission there emphasized in a very helpful way the attention given by the 
Blue Ridge conferences to social matters. 

The chairman called on Dr. Dillard, who referred to the first open 
letter to the college students of the South. He said he had heard many 
favorable comments on this letter in the North and South, and said it seemed 
to him to be exactly in line with the sort of thing the Commission should do. 
A big problem in the South, he said, was the creation of sound public opinion, 
not only as to the Negro, but in many other ways. ' There are plenty of 
people in the South," he said, "who are ready to stand by the man who speaks 
in the name of justice." He suggested that the Commission issue another 
letter, this one to deal primarily with the education of the Negro. 

The chairman called on each member of the Commission to discuss con 
ditions of race relationship in his own State. This resulted in an "experience 
meeting" of great interest. The general impression seemed to be that 
Southern white men were more ready now than ever before to uphold the idea 
of justice to the Negro, and that there was a frankness in discussing race 
matters that was absent a few years ago. There seemed to be a growing 
willingness to share educational funds more equitably, the railroads were 
giving Negroes better accommodations, the white business men were taking 
more interest in Negro business men and their organizations, municipal 
governments were more ready to consider living conditions in the Negro quar 
ters of Southern cities relatively to those obtaining in the sections occupied by 
white people, trade unions were showing a more sympathetic feeling toward 
Negro workmen, etc. Dr. Kennon mentioned the fact that in conferring the 


degree of doctor of laws recently, the University of Mississippi emphasized 
the point that the degree was conferred in that instance in recognition of 
studies made by the man who received it in the field of race relationships. 

Reports from the Southern States showed somewhat improved conditions 
of Negro living and opportunity. An earnest discussion followed, in which 
each member of the Commission gave his views as to the future of the Negro 
in the South. All seemed to think that the real problem ultimately would be : 
What will be the attitude of the South when the Negro is economically and 
educationally capable, in large numbers, of competing in a fair field with the 
white man? 

At present, it was pointed out, the ignorant white man's jealousy of and 
antipathy toward the well-to-do, as well as the shiftless Negro, constituted a 
problem of grave concern. 

Dr. Sutton expressed the belief that the white man would develop in his 
attitude as the Negro developed in his opportunity and capability, and that 
it was a waste of time to anticipate the problems of the future. "Our busi 
ness," he said, "is to see that the Negro becomes as good a citizen now as 
possible, with opportunities commensurate with his aptitudes, economically 
and morally." 

Dr. Thomas, in the course of a statement as to conditions in Arkansas, 
read a letter which he wrote in condemnation of a recent lynching in that 
State. The letter was printed in the newspapers. Dr. Scroggs suggested that 
the letter be incorporated in the minutes of the Commission, and Dr. Morse 
moved that the Commission formally approve it. [Appendix F.] 

A committee consisting of Professors Sutton, Morse, and Scroggs was 
appointed to draft a letter dealing with the education of the Negro. 


B. C. Caldwell, of the Slater and Jeanes Funds, addressed the Com 
mission at the morning session at the Battery Park Hotel, Asheville, on 
August 31 . Among other things, he spoke of the liberal attitude of Southern 
newspapers toward the Negro and his achievements and derelictions. He 
thought there was a growing tendency among Southern newspapers to be just 
to the Negro. The effect of this, he said, was tremendous from the point of 
view of public opinion. He also spoke of the better chances of the Southern 
Negro nowadays in trades and other forms of business enterprise. 

The report of the committee on the second letter was considered and 
further discussion postponed to a later session. 


In the afternoon the Commission's guests included Dr. Carl V. Reynolds, 
City Health Officer of Asheville; Rev. Dr. Robert F. Campbell, pastor of the 
First Presbyterian Church of Asheville; D. Hiden Ramsey, Commis 
sioner of Public Safety of Asheville; and Rev. Willis Clark, rector of the 
Episcopal Church of Asheville. 

Dr. Reynolds spoke of the Negro and public health. He said that in a 
large measure the burden of a high death rate was unjustly saddled on the 
Negro. The Negro was really immune to a great many diseases, he said. He 
spoke of the fact that living conditions forced on Negroes in many localities 
made adequate protection against tuberculosis an impossibility. 

Dr. Campbell said the mere fact of the Commission was heartening. He 
commended the policy of trying to reach college students. In the South there 
is vast ignorance of the Negro by the white, he said, and he thought the Com 
mission was on the right track in its efforts to arouse the interest of Southern 
college men in the question of race relationships. 

Rev. Mr. Clark thought the point of greatest contact between the races 
was religion, and he urged that colored ministers be induced to work with 
the white people who were seeking the improvement of the conditions of the 
mass of the colored people. 

Mr. Ramsey spoke especially of the Negro criminal. The masses of the 
Negroes, he said, do not, as a rule, recognize any social obligation on their 
part to help enforce and keep the law. It was also a fact, he said, that sen 
tence to jail was not as great a social detriment to the Negro as to the white 
man. The same penalty that would deter a white man would not deter the 
average Negro. He further stated that the ownership of property seemed to 
curb criminality among Negroes. He found that among Negro criminals 
there were very few who owned property. 

In the evening the Commission held a meeting at the City Hall in Ashe 
ville, at which time Dr. J. W. Walker and Dr. R. H. Bryant, colored physi 
cians; Rev. C. B. Dusenbury, pastor of the colored Presbyterian Church; 
B. J. Jackson, a successful colored business man; and W. S. Lee and J. H. 
Michael, principals of the colored schools, spoke to the Commission. As 
many as twenty Negro citizens were present, as well as a number of white 
citizens, including several city officials. 

The concluding session was devoted to a revision of the proposed second 
letter to the college men of the South. [Appendix A (II).] 

Professor E. C. Branson, of the University of North Carolina, was 
chosen chairman of the Commission for the succeeding year. 


The selection of the time and place of the next meeting was left to a 
committee consisting of the chairman, Dr. Dillard, and the secretary. 

Those present at the meeting were : 

Prof. E. C. Branson, Dr. William L. Kennon, Dr. Josiah Morse, Prof. 
James J. Doster, Prof. James D. Hoskins (chairman), Dr. William O. 
Scroggs, Dr. William S. Sutton, Dr. David Y. Thomas, Prof. William M. 
Hunley (secretary), Dr. James H. Dillard. 


The eighth meeting of the Commission was held in Washington on 
August 29, 30, and 31, 1917. Professor Branson presided at the several ses 
sions. All the members were present except Professors Farr, Kennon, and 

The meeting was scheduled to be held in Washington chiefly that the 
members might have an opportunity of attending the sessions of the Educa 
tional Conference held at the call of the United States Commissioner of 

The Commission's first session was called to order in one of the rooms 
of the Bureau of Labor Building on the evening of August 29. The minutes 
of the last meeting were read and approved. 

Guests of the Commission included Dr. Thomas Jesse Jones, George 
Foster Peabody, Julius Rosenwald, Dr. R. R. Moton, T. J. Woofter, Jr., 
T. R. Snaveley, R. H. Leavell, Prof. W. T. B. Williams, and Prof. Francis D. 

Dr. Jones extended an invitation to the Commission to attend as many 
sessions of the conference on Negro education as possible. On motion of 
Dr. Sutton, it was decided that the members attend as the Commission. 

Professor Branson explained the purposes of the Commission and out 
lined its activities. He then called on several of the guests to speak briefly 
about Negro Migration, which, he said, was to be the chief subject that the 
Commission would consider at this meeting. Those who spoke were Mr. 
Peabody, Mr. Rosenwald, Dr. Moton, Mr. Woofter, Mr. Snaveley, Mr. 
Leavell, Professor Williams, and Dr. Tyson. 

It seemed to be the consensus 'of opinion that the cause of the Negro 
leaving the South was a natural one, namely, that he was influenced in part 
by dissatisfaction with conditions under which he was forced to live, and 
mainly, perhaps, because of the lure of higher wages. 

After a general discussion the session adjourned, to meet again on 
August 30th at the Hotel Raleigh. 



The Commission was called to order by the chairman at 10 o'clock A. M. 
Before proceeding to the educational conferences there was a brief discussion 
of Negro Education, in which the following points were emphasized: 

"The importance of elementary schools to the economic, hygienic, and 
moral welfare of the white and colored people of the Southern states is funda 

"The reports of State superintendents are practically unanimous in their 
presentation of the poverty and inadequacy of the elementary schools. 

"The elementary schools are peculiarly the responsibility of public 

"The State and Jeanes Fund supervisors are rendering great service in 
awakening the interest of State and local authorities. 

"There are great possibilities in the private schools in improving the 
elementary schools." 

In the afternoon the Commission met in a room in the Department of 
the Interior Building. President John Hope, of Morehouse College, Atlanta, 
spoke of the growing feeling among the Negroes of Atlanta that "it won't 
do no good." In nineteen years, he said, Atlanta had gone backward in 
public school facilities for the Negro. There is no Negro high school in 
Atlanta, he said, and only about three in the State of Georgia. He stated 
that in the Atlanta colored schools there was no industrial training at all. 
He added, however, that the Negroes had voted for school bonds and had 
been promised additional schools. "The Negroes have complained and have 
received a respectful hearing from the school board," he said, "but they still 
believe that it ' won't do no good.' The Negroes are growing restless. When 
Atlanta was 'cleaned up,' the Negro quarter was ignored. These things are 
conducive to migration." 

Prof. Monroe N. Work, of Tuskegee, gave his impressions of the migra 
tion. "It is a leaderless movement," he said, "and presents the greatest oppor 
tunity since emancipation for readjustment of racial relations." He said 
good should come out of the exodus : better health conditions, less crime, and 
better educational facilities in the South. 

Discussion brought out the fact that there was a considerable migration 
of whites, as well as blacks. President Hope stated that he had seen labor 
agents in Cincinnati getting Negro laborers to go South to work in Alabama 
mines. He said many Negroes were going, and this constituted a counter- 
migration movement of considerable importance. 


Prof. George E. Haynes, of Fisk University, pointed out that the move 
ment of the Negro to the North had been going on since the Civil War, 
especially since 1880. He said the Negro was going cityward, more to 
Northern than to Southern cities. He said he had traveled extensively in the 
South in the past year and had found districts where there were no emigrants ; 
in other districts the population had almost vanished. In the districts of the 
last-mentioned kind, he said, racial troubles were more frequent. 

Discussion indicated that the opinion was prevalent among students of 
the question that migration so far had not been very harmful to the South; 
that conditions in the North where the Negroes had gone in large numbers 
were in many cases a repetition of those prevailing in the Southern sections 
of large Negro population ; that there was as yet no very pronounced short 
age of labor, and that better racial relations, based on frankness, fairness, and 
knowledge, would check the migration movement. 


The Commission convened again at the Raleigh at 8 p. M. On motion of 
Dr. Sutton the secretary was directed to write a letter of sympathy on behalf 
of the Commission to Mrs. Frissell on the death of her husband, Dr. H. B. 

Professor Doster was unanimously chosen chairman for the year fol 
lowing this meeting. 

There was discussion of a proposal presented by Dr. Dillard that the 
Commission authorize Mrs. J. D. Hammond to act as publicity director and 
send to the newspapers articles dealing with the Negro question and allied 
topics. The Commission decided to leave the proposal with the chairman, sub 
ject to final vote by the members. 

Dr. Morse presented a letter to be sent out as a third open letter to the 
college men of the South. After some discussion and amendment it was unani 
mously adopted, subject to the approval of the absent members. It was de 
cided that the secretary should publish the letter. [Appendix A (III).] 

It was decided that the Commission should attend the closing sessions 
of the educational conference on August 31st. 

The Commission then adjourned, subject to the call of the chairman. 

From the large amount of matter so far collected the papers contained in 
the following Appendix were selected for publication in these Minutes as 
being perhaps of most immediate interest and of most value for future 





This letter is not written to convince you that lynching is a crime, for you know it 
already. Its object is to urge you to show others whenever opportunity presents itself that 
lynching does more than rob its victims of their constitutional rights and of their lives. It 
simultaneously lynches law and justice and civilization, and outrages all the finer human 
sentiments and feelings. 

The wrong that it does to the wretched victims is almost as nothing compared to the 
injury it does to the lynchers themselves, to the community, and to society at large. 

Lynching is a contagious social disease, and as such is of deep concern to every 
American citizen and to every lover of civilization. It is especially of concern to you, and 
you can do much to abolish it. Vice and crime know that their best, though unconscious 
and unwilling allies, are luke-warmness and timidity on the part of educated, "good" citi 
zens. Wrong is weaker than right, and must yield whenever right is persistent and 

It is, of course, no argument in favor of lynching, nor can we derive any legitimate 
satisfaction from the fact that it is not confined to any one section of our country and that 
the victims are not always black. One of the bad features of lynching is that it quickly 
becomes a habit, and, like all bad habits, deepens and widens rapidly. Formerly lynchings 
were mainly incited by rape and murder, but the habit has spread until now such outrages 
are committed for much less serious crimes. 

The records of lynching for 1914, compiled by three different agencies, give the total 
number for the year as 52, 54, and 74, the authority for these figures being Tuskegee Insti 
tute, the Chicago Tribune, and the Crisis, respectively. 

The conflicting reports can not be harmonized, but, to avoid any possibility of exag 
geration, we may employ the most conservative of these for analysis. 

It reveals these facts : Number lynched colored : male 46, female 3 ; white : male 3, 
female 0. Total 52. 

Crimes charged against victims: Murder 13, robbery and murder 6, robbery and 
attempted murder 1, suspected of murder 1, rape 6, attempted rape 1, killing an officer 5, 
wounding officer 1, murderous assault 3, alleged murderous assault 1, biting off a man's 
chin 1, accused of wounding a person 1, killing person in quarrel 4, beating child to death 1, 
trying to force way into woman's room 1, stealing shoes 1, stealing mules 1, setting fire to 
barn 2, assisting a man to escape who had wounded another 1, being found under a house 1. 

The three women were lynched for the following reasons: One, 17 years old, for 
killing a man who, it was reported, had raped her; the second was accused of beating a 
child to death; the third was accused of helping her husband set fire to a barn. In the 
last case, both husband and wife were lynched in the presence of their 4-year-old child. 


It should be especially noted that of the fifty-two persons lynched, only seven two 
white and five colored or 13 per cent, were charged with the crime against womanhood. 
This shows clearly how far and how quickly the habit has spread beyond the bounds set by 
those who first resorted to lynching as- a remedy. 

According to states, the lynchings were distributed as follows : Alabama 2, Arkansas 1, 
Florida 4, Georgia 2, Louisiana 12, Mississippi 12, Missouri 1, New Mexico 1, North Dakota 

1, North Carolina 1, Oklahoma 3, Oregon 1, South Carolina 4, Tennessee 1, Texas 6. 

The same agency which reported fifty-two lynchings for 1914 makes the following 
report for 1915: Number lynched colored: male 51, female 3; white: male 14, female 0. 
Total 68. This is an increase of 16, or 30 per cent, over the total number for 1914. 

According to states, the lynchings for 1915 were distributed as follows: Alabama 9, 
Arkansas 5, Florida 5, Georgia 18, Illinois 1, Kentucky 5, Louisiana 2, Mississippi 9, Missouri 

2, Ohio 1, Oklahoma 3, South Carolina 1, Tennessee 2, Texas 5. 

It is worthy of note that in at least four cases it later was discovered that the victims 
of the mob were innocent of the crime of which they were accused. 

These are the terrible facts. Is there no remedy? Have we not sufficient legal intelli 
gence and machinery to take care of every case of crime committed? Must we fall back 
on the methods of the jungle? Civilization rests on obedience to law, which means the 
substitution of reason and deliberation for impulse, instinct, and passion. It is easy and 
tempting to obey the latter, but to be governed by the former requires self-conrol, which 
comes from the interposition of thought between impulse and action. Herein lies the .college 
man's opportunity to serve his fellows; to interpose deliberation between their impulses 
and action, and in that way to control both. 

Society has a right to expect college men to help in moulding opinion and shaping 
conduct in matters of this sort. It is their privilege and duty to cooperate with others in 
leading crusades against crime and mob rule and for law and civilization. The college man 
belongs in the front rank of those fighting for moral and social progress. For this reason 
the University Commission makes its first appeal to you and urges you strongly to cooperate 
with the press, the pulpit, the bar, officers of the law, and all other agencies striving to 
eliminate this great evil, by speaking out boldly when speech is needed and letting your 
influence be felt against it in decided, unmistakable measure and manner. 

(Signed) W. S. SUTTON, Texas, 

JOSIAH MORSE, South Carolina, 
W. L. KENNON, Mississippi, 
W. O. SCROGGS, Louisiana, 
JAMES D. HOSKINS, Tennessee, 
R. J. H. DELOACH, Georgia, 
W. M. HUNLEY, Virginia, 
E. C. BRANSON, North Carolina, 
JAMES M. FARR, Florida, 
D. Y. THOMAS, Arkansas, 
J. J. DOSTER, Alabama. 
January 5, 1916. 




In its first open letter to college men of the South, issued at the beginning of the 
present year, the University Commission urged them to unite their efforts with those of the 
press, the pulpit, the bar, the officers of the law, and all other agencies laboring for the elimi 
nation of the monster evil of mob violence. These agencies have labored diligently and with 
substantial results, as is indicated by the decrease of the average annual number of lynch- 
ings from 171 for the decade 1886-1895 to 70 for the decade 1906-1915. Nevertheless, the 
Commission wishes to reiterate its appeal with renewed emphasis, knowing that the. eradica 
tion of so virulent a social disease as the lynching mania can be effected only by the pro 
longed and vigorous efforts of sane and patriotic citizens. 

In this letter the Commission wishes to direct the attention of the college men to the 
educational aspect of the race question, inasmuch as the solution of all human problems 
ultimately rests upon rightly directed education. In its last analysis, education simply means 
bringing forth all the native capacities of the individual for the benefit both of himself 
and of society. It is axiomatic that a developed plant, animal, or man is far more valuable 
to society than the undeveloped. It is likewise obvious that ignorance is the most fruitful 
source of human ills. Furthermore, it is as true in a social as in a physical sense that a 
chain is no stronger than its weakest link. The good results thus far obtained, as shown 
by the Negro's progress within recent years, prompt the Commission to urge the extension 
of his educational opportunities. 

The inadequate provision for the education of the Negro is more than an injustice to 
him; it is an injury to the white man. The South can not realize its destiny if one-third of 
its population is undeveloped and inefficient. For our common welfare we must strive to 
cure disease wherever we find it, strengthen whatever is weak, and develop all that is 
undeveloped. The initial steps for increasing the efficiency and usefulness of the Negro 
race must necessarily be taken in the school room. There can be no denying that more 
and better schools, with better trained and better paid teachers, more adequate supervision 
and longer terms, are needed for the blacks, as well as the whites. The Negro schools are, 
of course, parts of the school systems of their respective states, and as such share in the 
progress and prosperity of their state systems. Our appeal is for a larger share for the 
Negro, on the ground of the common welfare and common justice. He is the weakest link 
in our civilization, and our welfare is indissolubly bound up with his. 

Many means are open to the college men of the South for arousing greater public 
interest in this matter and for promoting a more vigorous public effort to this end. A 
right attitude in this, as in all other important public questions, is a condition precedent to 
success. For this reason the Commission addresses to Southern college men this special 

(Signed) J. J. DOSTER, Alabama, 

D. Y. THOMAS, Arkansas, 
JAMES M. FARR, Florida, 

R. J. H. DELOACH, Georgia, 
W. L. KENNON, Mississippi, 

E. C. BRANSON, North Carolina, 
JOSIAH MORSE, South Carolina, 
JAMES D. HOSKINS, Tennessee, 

September 1, 1916. W. M. HUNLEY, Virginia. 



On two previous occasions the University Commission on Southern Race Questions 
addressed open letters to the college men of the South, setting forth briefly the results of 
their studies and conferences on topics of importance to both races. The first of these dealt 
with the lynching evil, and, after pointing out the inherent injustice of it and its menace 
to the established institutions of society, emphasized the fact that human actions are like 
boomerangs, affecting those who act as much as, if not more than, those who are acted upon. 
It is becoming more and more recognized that the white race in many subtle ways has 
suffered more from lynching and its consequences than has the black. 

The second letter dealt with the education of the Negro, and stressed the need of 
larger support, better teachers, longer terms, and more adequate facilities, again on the 
ground of inherent justice of the proposal, and the fact that in doing for others we do 
even more for ourselves. 

In the present letter the Commission wishes to address the college men on what it 
considers the most immediate pressing problem of the South, and one of the most important 
for the nation, namely, Negro Migration. The present migration of the Negro is not an 
anomalous phenomenon in human affairs. The economic and social laws that affect the 
lives and actions of white men produce practically the same effects upon the Negro. It 
should not be surprising, therefore, to find him obeying so promptly and in such large 
numbers the economic law of demand and supply. There was no extensive migration until 
the industrial centers, facing a dangerous shortage of labor, owing to the complete shutting 
off of the European sources of supply, turned to the South, where large sources were 
available. And so they sent their agents, with very alluring promises,' and liberally used the 
Negro press, hand-bills, letters, lecturers, and other means designed quickly to uproot the 
Negro and draw him to the railroads, factories, and mines, where his labor is sorely needed. 
The dollar has lured the Negro to the East and North, as it has lured the white man even 
to the most inaccessible and forbidding regions of the earth. But the human being is 
moved and held not by money alone. Birthplace, home ties, family, friends, associations 
and attachments of numerous kinds, fair treatment, opportunity to labor and enjoy the 
legitimate fruits of labor, assurance of even-handed justice in the courts, good educational 
facilities, sanitary living conditions, tolerance, and sympathy these things, and others like 
them, make an even stronger appeal to the human mind and heart than does money. 

The South can not compete on a financial basis with other sections of the country for 
the labor of the Negro, but the South can easily keep her Negroes against all allurements 
if she will give them a larger measure of those things that human beings hold dearer than 
material goods. Generosity begets gratitude, and gratitude grips and holds man more 
powerfully than hooks of steel. It is axiomatic that fair dealing, sympathy, patience, toler 
ance, and other human virtues benefit those who exercise them even more than the 
beneficiaries of them. It pays to be just and kind, both spiritually and materially. Surely 
the South has nothing to lose and much to gain by adopting an attitude like that indicated 

(Signed) E. C. BRANSON, Professor of Rural Economics and Sociology, University 
of North Carolina. 

R. P. BROOKS, Professor of History, University of Georgia. 

JAS. J. DOSTER (chairman), Dean of the School of Education, and Pro 
fessor of Education, University of Alabama. 


Chancellor of the University of 


President of Delaware College, 

formerly of the University of South 




President of the University of Virginia 

President of the Slater and Jeanes 

Boards, formerly Professor in Tulanc 

University, New Orleans 


JAMES M. FARR, Professor of English, University of Florida. 

JAMES D. HOSKINS, Dean of the University of Tennessee. 

W. M. HUNLEY (secretary), Professor of Economics and Political Science, 

Virginia Military Institute. 

W. L. KENNON, Professor of Physics, University of Mississippi. 
JOSIAH MORSE, Professor of Psychology and Philosophy, University of 

South Carolina. 
W. O. SCROGGS, Professor of Economics and Sociology, Louisiana State 


W. S. SUTTON, Dean of the School of Education, University of Texas. 
D. Y. THOMAS, Professor of History and Political Science, University of 




(Presented at the Second Meeting, University of Georgia, December 19, 1912, by 
C. H. Brough, Chairman) 

Thinking that this Commission could do no better than follow the constructive outline 
which Dr. Dillard has mapped out, I invite suggestions along the following lines: 

I. What are the conditions? 

(a) Religious : Contributions, excessive denominationalism, lack of the practical in 

preaching, etc. 

(b) Educational : Self-help, Northern contributions, public schools, etc. 

(c) Hygienic: Whole question of health and disease. 

(d) Economic: Land ownership, business enterprises, abuse of credit system, etc. 

(e) Civic: Common carriers, courts of justice, franchise, etc. 

II. What should, and can, be done, especially by whites, for improvement? 
III. W r hat may be hoped as to future conditions and relations? 

With reference to the religious contributions to the betterment of the Negro, it may 
be said that our churches have been pursuing a "penny-wise and pound-foolish economy." 
The Presbyterians last year gave an average of three postage stamps per member to the 
work. The Methodists averaged less than the price of a cheap soda water just a five-cent 
one. The Southern Baptist Convention has only been asking from its large membership 
$15,000 annually for this tremendous work. In view of these conditions, as Southern 
churchmen we may well echo the passionately eloquent outburst of Dr. W. D. Weatherford, 
one of the most profound thinkers and virile writers on the Negro question, and the leader 
of the young men of the South in their Y. M. C. A. work, "Do we mean to say by our 
niggardly gifts that these people are helpless and worthless in the sight of God? Do we 
mean to say that one cent per member is doing our share in evangelizing the whole race? 
God pity the Southern Christians, the Southern churches, and the Southern States if we do 
not awake to our responsibility in this hour of opportunity." 

But the responsibility for deplorable religious conditions among the Negroes is not 
altogether with the whites. While it is true that the Negro is by nature a religious and 
emotional animal, while there are approximately 4,500,000 church members among the 
10,000,000 Negroes in the United States, and these churches represent property values of 


nearly $40,000,000, yet it is also painfully true that excessive denominationalism and 
ecclesiastical rivalry and dissensions prevent the formation of strong, compact organizations 
among them, and, as a result, there are twice as many church organizations as there should 
be, congregations are small, and the salaries paid their preachers are not large enough to 
secure competent men. 

In connection with the character of the average Negro preacher, it is interesting to 
note that in an investigation made by Atlanta University concerning the character of the 
Negro ministry, of two hundred Negro laymen who were asked their opinion of the moral 
character of Negro preachers, only thirty-seven gave decided answers of approval. Among 
faults mentioned by these Negro laymen were selfishness, deceptiveness, love of money, 
sexual impurity, dogmatism, laziness, and ignorance, and to these may be added the fact 
that preaching is generally of a highly emotional type and is wholly lacking in any practical 
moral message. At the April meeting of the Southern Sociological Congress I trust that 
some one will discuss the necessity of holding up before the Negroes the conception of the 
Perfect Man of Galilee of unblemished character and spotless purity, who went about doing 
good, as well as the conception of a Saviour of power and a Christ of divinity. 

Educationally, the Negroes of the South have made remarkable progress. In 1880, 
of the Negro population above ten years of age, 70 per cent was illiterate. By the end of 
the next decade this illiteracy had been reduced to 57.1 per cent, and by the close of the 
century it had declined to 44.5 per cent. During the last ten years of the nineteenth century 
there was an increase of the Negro population of 1,087,000 in the school age of ten years 
and over, yet, despite this increase, there was a decrease in illiteracy of 190,000. In 1912 
there are over 2,000,000 between the ages of five and eighteen, or 54 per cent of the total 
number of educable Negro children, enrolled in the common schools of the former slave 
States, and the percentage of illiteracy among the Negroes is only 27.5 per cent. 

In the State of Arkansas, for the year ending June 30, 1912, 109,731 Negro children 
were enrolled in the common schools out of a total educable Negro population of 175,503, 
and the percentage of illiteracy among the Negroes was only 26.2 per cent. Besides the 
Branch Normal at Pine Bluff, maintained by the State at an annual expense of $15,000 an 
institution which has graduated 236 Negro men and women in the thirty-eight years of its 
useful history and six splendid Negro high schools at Fort Smith, Helena, Hot Springs, 
Little Rock, and Pine Bluff, there are six denominational high schools and colleges in 
Arkansas that are giving the Negroes an academic education and practical instruction in 
manual training, domestic science, practical carpentry, and scientific agriculture. These 
facts tell the story of praiseworthy sacrifice, frugality, struggle, and aspiration. 

The amount devoted to Negro education in the South for the forty years ending with 
the academic session 1910-11 is approximately $166,000,000. Of this amount the Negro is 
beginning to pay a fair proportion, especially in North Carolina and Virginia. But the 
Southern white people have borne the brunt of the burden, meriting the stately eulogy of 
the late lamented commissioner of education, William T. Harris, that "the Southern white 
people, in the organization and management of systems of public schools, manifest wonderful 
and remarkable self-sacrifice," and also the tribute of Dr. Lyman Abbott, editor of The 
Outlook, "While Northern benevolence has spent tens of thousands in the South to educate 
the Negroes, Southern patriotism has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars for the same 
purpose. This has been done voluntarily and without aid from the Federal Government." 

The South as a whole has appreciated the truth of the six axioms in the program of 
Negro education so admirably set forth by Dr. W. S. Sutton, of the University of Texas, in 


a recent bulletin, and she boldly affirms that the highest welfare of the "black child of 
Providence" committed to her keeping lies not in social or even political equality, but in 
equality of industrial opportunity and educational enlightenment. 

In the problem of Negro education, the keystone of the arch is the rural school, 
which has been shamefully neglected. Dr. Dillard, by his wise administration of the Jeanes 
and Slater Funds, has rendered an invaluable service in the improvement of rural Negro 
schools, employing at the present time 117 supervisors in 119 Southern counties at an 
average annual salary of $301.38 to competent teachers who cooperate with the county 
examiners and superintendents in the supervision of Negro schools. The question has been 
raised by Hon. George B. Cook, superintendent of Public Instruction in Arkansas, as to 
whether these supervisors and the funds for their employment should not be placed under 
the immediate control of the State Departments of Education by Dr. Dillard, and I respect 
fully submit this as a fruitful subject for discussion by this Commission. 

Closely allied to the proper solution of the problem of Negro education are the prac 
tical questions of better hygienic conditions and housing, the reduction of the fearful 
mortality rate now devastating the race, and the prevention of disease. At the present the 
death rate of the Negroes is 28 per 1,000 as opposed to 15 per 1,000 for the whites. The 
chief causes of this excessive death rate among the Negroes seem to be infant mortality, 
scrofula, venereal troubles, consumption, and intestinal diseases. According to Hoffman, 
over 50 per cent of the Negro children born in Richmond, Va., die before they are one 
year old. This is due primarily to sexual immorality, enfeebled constitutions of parents, 
and infant starvation, all of which can be reduced by teaching the Negroes the elementary 
laws of health. 

The highest medical authorities agree that the Negro has a predisposition to con 
sumption, due to his small chest expansion and the insignificant weight of his lungs (only 
4 ounces), and this theory seems to be borne out by the fact that the excess of Negro 
deaths over whites from consumption is 105 per cent in the representative Southern cities. 
But however strong the influence of heredity, it is undeniable that consumption, the hook 
worm, and fevers of all kinds are caused in a large measure by the miserable housing con 
ditions prevalent among the Negroes. Poor housing, back alleys, no ventilation, poor ventila 
tion, and no sunshine do much to foster disease of all kinds. 

Furthermore, people can not be moral as long as they are herded together like cattle, 
without privacy or decency. If a mother, a father, three grown daughters, and men 
boarders have to sleep in two small rooms, as is frequently the case, we must expect lack 
of modesty, promiscuity, illegitimacy, and sexual diseases. It is plainly our duty to preach 
the gospel of hygienic evangelism to our unfortunate "neighbors in black," for the 
Ciceronian maxim, "Mens sana in cor pore sano," is fundamental in education. Certainly 
he who is instrumental in causing the Negro to build two and three-room houses where 
only a one-room shack stood before, and to construct one sleeping porch where none was 
before, deserves more at the hands of his fellow-man than the whole race of demagogues 
put together. 

Economic progress has been the handmaid of educational enlightenment in the 
improvement of the Negro. Indeed, to the Negro the South owes a debt of real gratitude 
for her rapid agricultural growth, and in no less degree does every true son of the South 
owe the Negro a debt of gratitude for his unselfishness, his faithfulness, and his devotion 
to the white people of Dixieland, not only during the dark and bloody days of the Civil 
War, but during the trying days of our industrial and political renaissance. 


To the Negro, either as an independent owner, tenant, or laborer, we partly owe the 
increase in the number of our farms from 504,000 in 1860 to over 2,000,000 at the present 
time; the increase in our farm values from $2,048,000 in 1860 to $4,500,000 at the present 
time; the decrease in the size of our farm unit from 321 acres in 1860 to 84 acres at the 
present time. 

In this substantial progress of our glorious Southland the Negro has had a distinct 
and commendable share. It has been estimated by workers in the Census Bureau that in 
1890 Negroes were cultivating, either as owners, tenants, or hired laborers, one hundred 
million acres of land, and at the present time the estimated value of property owned by 
Negroes in the United States is $750,000,000. Of the 214,678 farmers in Arkansas in 1910, 
63,593, or almost 30 per cent, were Negroes, and of these Negro farmers 14,662, or 23 per 
cent, were owners and 48,885, or 77 per cent, were tenants. In the United States as a whole, 
at the period of the last decennial census, there were 2,143,176 Negroes engaged in farming, 
1,324,160 in domestic and personal service, 275,149 in manufacturing and mechanical pur 
suits, 209,154 in trade and transportation, and 47,324 in professional service a remarkable 
showing for a race that emerged barely three centuries ago from the night of African 
darkness and depravity. 

However, there are four well-defined retarding forces to the fullest economic develop 
ment of the Negro in the South, and to these evils this Commission should give thoughtful 
and earnest consideration : the tenant system, the one-crop system, .the abuse of the credit 
system, and rural isolation. I believe that industrial education, teaching the Negro the 
lessons of the nobility of toil, the value of thrift and honesty, the advantages attaching 
to the division of labor and the diversification of industry, and the dangers lurking in the 
seductive credit system will prove an effective panacea for these self-evident evils. 

Therefore, as a Southern man, born, raised, and educated in the proud commonwealth 
of Mississippi, I welcome the splendid efforts of such men as Booker T. Washington, of 
the Tuskegee Institute; Major Moton, of Hampton Institute; Joseph Price, of Livingtone 
College, North Carolina ; Charles Banks and Isaia.h Montgomery, of Mississippi ; and 
Joseph A. Booker and E. T. Venegar, of Arkansas, in behalf of the industrial education 
of their race. 

As the sons of proud Anglo-Saxon sires, we of the South doubt seriously the wisdom 
of the enfranchisement of an inferior race. We believe that Reconstruction Rule was "a 
reign of ignorance, mongrelism, and depravity," that the Negro is the cheapest voter and 
the greatest Bourbon in American politics, North and South alike, and that as a political 
factor he has been a disturbing factor in our civic life. Personally, I believe in the 
Mississippi educational qualification test for suffrage, sanely administered, with as much 
ardor as in a literacy test for foreign immigration. 

However, "a condition and not a theory confronts us." As an American citizen the 
Negro is entitled to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, and the equal protection of 
our laws for the safeguarding of these inalienable rights. The regulation of suffrage in 
the South, as well as in the North, is and always will be determined by the principle of 
expediency. But none but the most prejudiced Negro-hater, who oftentimes goes to the 
extreme of denying that any black man can have a white soul, would controvert the propo 
sition that in the administration of quasi-public utilities and courts of justice the Negro 
is entitled to the fair and equal protection of the law. Separate coach laws are wise, but 
discriminations in service are wrong. 


If "law hath her seat in the bosom of God and her voice in the harmony of the 
world, all things paying obeisance to her, the greatest as not exempt from her power and 
the least as feeling her protecting care," then the meanest Negro on a Southern plantation 
is entitled to the same consideration in the administration of justice as the proudest scion 
of a cultured Cavalier. 

It is, indeed, a travesty on Anglo-Saxon jurisprudence to send a Negro to the peni 
tentiary for a term of eighteen years for selling a gallon of whiskey in violation of law 
and at the same time allow scores of white murderers to go unpunished, as was recently 
stated to be a fact by a Governor of a Southern state. Even if it be only theoretically 
true that "all people are created free and equal/' and if, as a practical proposition, the 
Negro is a "ham sandwich for the Caucasian race," it is undeniably true that he is entitled 
to the equal protection of our laws and to the rights safeguarding every American citizen 
under the beneficent provisions of the Constitution of the United States. 

If I may use the eloquent words of the golden-tongued, clear-visioned, and lion- 
hearted Bishop Charles B. Galloway, "The race problem is no question for small politicians, 
but for broad-minded, patriotic statesmen. I\ is not for non-resident theorists, but for 
clear-visioned humanitarians. All our dealings with the Negro should be in the spirit of the 
Man of Galilee." 

The task confronting this Commission, composed of Southern white men and repre 
senting the universities of the South, is Atlean in its magnitude and fraught with tre 
mendous significance. I believe that ours is a noble mission that of discussing the ways 
and means of bettering the religious, educational, hygienic, economic, and civic conditions 
of an inferior race. I believe that by protesting against the miscegenation of the races we 
can recognize the sacredness of the individual white and the individual Negro and do much 
to preserve that racial integrity recently jeopardized by the Johnson-Cameron misalliance. 
I believe that by preaching the gospel of industrial education to the whites and Negroes 
alike we can develop a stronger consciousness of social responsibility. I believe that by the 
recognition of the fact that in the Negro are to be found the essential elements of human 
nature, capable of conscious evolution through education and economic and religious better 
ment, we will be led at last to a conception of a world unity, whose Author and Finisher 
is God. 



(Presented at the Fourth Meeting, Washington, D. C., December 15, 1914, by W. O. Scroggs, 

Chairman of the Committee) 

The Committee on the Civic Status of the Negro, appointed at the meeting of the 
Commission of Southern Universities on Race Problems held in Athens, Ga., in December, 
1912, realized at the outset that the first work of their organization was "to find itself." 
Study, investigation, and discussion have now convinced this committee that the one great 
task before the people of the South is to develop a more rational viewpoint on all matters 
pertaining to interracial relations. Our people as a whole feel very much on this subject, 
but they know very little. Most of the discussion of the problem that we hear is merely 
an airing of the emotions. But few of our citizens are familiar with the actual civic, 
economic, educational, hygienic, or religious conditions among the Negroes of their own 
communities, and with so little knowledge at hand they can form no real judgment as to 
the public policy that intelligent citizens should advocate. 


Fortunately, our thinking men and women are coming to realize how little is really 
known, and a great change is noticeable in their attitude toward what we usually call "the 
race problem." In the past there was a tendency on their part to leave the question alone, 
and there was a belief, or at least a frequently expressed hope, that the problem would 
eventually solve itself if only discussion and agitation were not allowed to disturb the 
forces of racial adjustment. But time has shown that discussion and agitation will not 
subside, and that while the enlightened citizenship of the South has sat in silence the voice 
of the demagogue has been heard throughout the length and breadth of the land, quaking 
with the assumed fear of "Negro domination," and shouting in stentorian tones for "Anglo- 
Saxon supremacy." Politicians of this stripe have found that the race issue possesses 
wonderful possibilities in the way of vote-getting, and they have not scrupled to fan the 
flames of race prejudice, even to the extent of advocating mob violence, if this seemed an 
effective means of riding into power. 

It is unnecessary for us to say that such types of men have not voiced the sentiment 
of the thinking South. Nevertheless, they have reached a vastly greater audience than have 
those who entertain enlightened opinion on this subject. Where one man has read a book 
by such exponents of straight thinking on Southern problems as Stone, Murphy, Page, 
Weatherford, or Mrs. Hammond, it is safe to assume that a hundred have heard or read 
the Negrophobic diatribes of designing office seekers ; and while the latter have raged 
and imagined vain things, bench and bar, preacher and teacher, with a few notable excep 
tions, have sat mute and lethargic, and by their silence have given an impression of probable 
acquiescence in such views. Of the views of earnest students on this vital problem the man 
on the street is densely ignorant, and who can blame him? 

In the last few years, however, the thinking as well as the feeling South has been 
making itself heard, and its voice has been growing ever louder and stronger. The social 
conscience of this section has found its expression in the Southern Sociological Congress, 
which has declared for "the solving of the race problem in a spirit of helpfulness to the 
Negro and of equal justice to both races." With this splendid ideal the members of this 
Commission are in hearty sympathy. This does not mean, of course, that we ourselves are 
actually to undertake to solve this tremendous social question, but it is our firm conviction 
that the difficulties are enormously increased by the all-pervading ignorance to which we 
have just referred. We regard it as our function, therefore, to turn on the light wherever 
we may; and if by any means we can assist in supplying knowledge where now we find 
only blind prejudice and ignorance, we believe that our duty will have been performed. 

In studying the civic status of the Negro we find three distinct phases : the first coin 
cides with the period of slavery and lasts till 1865 ; the second corresponds roughly to the 
Reconstruction era and ends with the judicial annulment of the Civil Rights Act in 1883; 
the last period, which still continues, has been marked by a general undoing of Reconstruc 
tion and by a tendency on the part of the American people to leave the civic status of the 
colored population to be determined by the slow process of evolution. 


During the period before 1865 slavery was the normal condition of the vast majority 
of the Negroes, and those who were not enslaved suffered serious disabilities. Even in 
colonial times there were sporadic outbreaks of mob violence against persons of color, 
which are in many respects analagous to the race riots of modern times. Two examples 


often cited are the riots in the city of New York in 1712 and 1741, due to incendiarism on 
the part of slaves. In both cases numbers of Negroes were hanged, burned at the stake, 
and otherwise punished. In 1788 the Massachusetts legislature passed a law providing that 
"no person being an African or Negro, other than a subject of the Emperor of Morocco 
or a citizen of some one of the United States (to be evidenced by a certificate from the 
Secretary of the State of which he is a citizen), shall tarry within this Commonwealth for 
a longer time than two months." * This law was never enforced, and in 1822 a legislative 
committee declared that the harsh "Black Laws" of other states were driving Negroes into 
Massachusetts, and that the committee viewed with alarm "the increase of a species of 
population which threatened to become both injurious and burdensome. 2 A Connecticut 
judge in 1833 ruled that a Negro was a person and not a citizen. In 1803 Ohio required 
every free Negro who came into the State to give bond in the sum of five hundred dollars. 
Oregon (1849), Iowa (1851), Indiana (1851), and Illinois (1835) forbade free Negroes to 
come within their borders, and Delaware permitted them to come only from Maryland. Ohio, 
Iowa, and Maryland denied Negroes the right to testify in cases in which white persons 
were involved. Before the Civil War, Negroes were excluded from the militia service. 
New York excluded them from the basis of State (not Federal) representation unless they 
paid taxes, and in 1838 forbade colored aliens to hold real estate. 8 

Much opposition, not only to mixed schools, but also to separate schools for colored 
pupils, developed at various places in the North. The suppression of a school for Negroes 
established in Canterbury, Conn., in 1833 by Miss Prudence Crandall is a case in point. 
The founder of the school was sent to jail for violation of a law requiring the consent of 
the civil authorities for the establishment of such an institution, and when the verdict 
against her was set aside on technical grounds a mob attacked and damaged the school 
building and caused the abandonment of the philanthropic undertaking. 4 In New York 
City, until the Civil War, the street railway companies allowed Negroes equal privileges 
with whites on some of their cars, but on others compelled them to ride on the front plat 
form. In 1855 a colored minister, James W. C. Pennington, insisted on taking a seat in 
a car not designated for colored persons and was forcibly ejected by a conductor. He com 
plained so strenuously to a policeman that the officer arrested him for disorderly conduct. 
He brought suit against the company, but a jury declared that the corporation was within 
its rights in excluding a person on account of color. 6 

The incidents thus cited might be multiplied many times over, but they will suffice 
to show the civic status of the Negro in the North before the War between the States made 
him the ward of the nation. In the Southern States, during this period, the position of free 
Negroes was likewise unenviable. Louisiana did not permit them to enter the State. Vir 
ginia (1850) stipulated that they must leave the State within twelve months after their 
emancipation or forfeit their freedom. In Maryland any free Negro leaving the State for 
more than thirty days became a non-resident and subject to the laws excluding Negroes. 
In Missouri, Negro schools and religious meetings were declared to be unlawful assemblies. 

1 ]ohn Daniels, In Freedom's Birthplace, 27. 

2 Ibid., 28. 

8 Wm. Yates, Rights of Coloured Men, pp. yi, vii; B. T. Washington, Story of the 
Negro, I, 199; G. T. Stephenson, Race Distinctions in American Law, 36-39; Trimble, 
Slavery in the United States of America (London, 1863). 

4 Wm. Yates, Rights of Coloured Men, 54. 

5 New York Herald, May 25, 1855, and December 20, 1856. 


The problem of the free Negro, with which the Northern States especially had 
wrestled before 1865, became likewise a Southern problem after the emancipation of the 
slaves, but it was a problem magnified a hundredfold. As a result, a crop of "Black Laws" 
sprang up in the South between 1865 and 1868 which would have placed the former slaves 
in a position like that occupied by free Negroes in both the Northern and Southern States 
before the war. These laws were made the occasion for the Federal intervention which 
made the Negro, for the time being, an object of special Government protection. 

Civic STATUS OF THE NEGRO, 1865-1883 

The Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, proclaimed a 
part of the organic law on December 18, 1865, destroyed the last vestiges of chattel slavery 
in this country and secured for every Negro the status of a free man but not the status 
of a citizen. The dictum of the Supreme Court, enunciated eight years previously in the 
Dred Scott case, had been to the effect that slaves were not citizens and could not become 
citizens, even when emancipated or descended from free Negroes. To secure to the freed- 
men full rights of citizenship, the Federal Congress, broadly interpreting its power to 
enforce the Thirteenth Amendment by proper legislation, on April 9, 1866, passed the 
so-called first Civil Rights bill over the veto of President Johnson. This measure aimed 
directly at the Dred Scott decision by declaring that "all persons born in the United States 
and not subject to any foreign power, excluding Indians not taxed," were citizens of the 
United States, and, as such, regardless of race, color, or previous conditions of servitude, 
they were entitled "to full and equal benefit of all laws and proceedings for the security of 
person and property, as is enjoyed by white citizens." In the next few months a number 
of cases involving the constitutionality of this measure reached the lower courts, but the 
adoption of the Fourteenth Amendment, proclaimed in effect on July 28, 1868, rendered a 
decision by the higher courts unnecessary. This amendment incorporated the gist of the 
law of 1866 into the Federal Constitution by declaring : "All persons born or naturalized 
in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United 
States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which 
shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any 
State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law, or deny 
to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws." The main purpose 
of this amendment was undoubtedly to remove all question as to the constitutionality of 
the Civil Rights Act, and in 1870 this last measure was again placed upon the statute books 
in almost its original form. In 1875 a second Civil Rights law was enacted which prescribed 
full and equal accommodations for all citizens, regardless of color, in hotels, public con 
veyances, and places of amusement, and prescribed heavy penalties for violations of the 

This measure marked the culmination of Federal legislation in behalf of the civil 
rights of the black man. And now, four decades thereafter, we may well inquire what 
benefits have been obtained from it by the Negro race. The Fourteenth Amendment, which 
was designed solely for the Negro's protection, has been employed in a manner far removed 
from the intentions of its authors. The litigation that has arisen under it has been con 
cerned with the State control of corporate wealth rather than with racial relations. Accord 
ing to Mr. Charles W. Collins, by 1912 604 cases involving the interpretation of this 
amendment had been passed upon by the Supreme Court, and of these only twenty-eight 


had any connection with the status of the Negro. 1 Even before a case directly involving 
the rights of colored men had reached the Court that body had handed down a decision in 
the Slaughter House Cases which indicated that the Negroes' gains from the adoption of 
the Amendment were a negligible quantity. These cases had no direct bearing on the race 
question, but the Court, in interpreting that part of the Amendment which declared that 
"no state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities 
of citizens of the United States," held that Federal citizenship was distinct from state 
citizenship, and that the Amendment did not empower the Federal Government to interfere 
with the privileges and immunities inherent in State citizenship. 2 In other words, the 
Amendment was intended only to prevent a state from abridging the privileges and immuni 
ties appertaining to Federal citizenship, and, in case of alleged curtailment of his rights by 
private acts of individuals, the citizen should appeal to the police power of his State and 
not to the United States. 

In 1875 the first case in which the rights of Negroes under the Amendment were 
directly involved came before the Court. 3 A number of white men in Louisiana had 
forcibly broken up a Negro political meeting and had been tried and convicted in the 
United States Circuit Court for violation of the Act of 1870. The Supreme Court set 
aside the conviction on the ground that the law was unauthorized by the Fourteenth Amend 
ment, and that when a person's rights were invaded by another he must not appeal to the 
Federal Government for protection. This decision, it will be observed, was strictly in 
accord with the principles enumerated in the Slaughter House Cases. 

Finally, in 1883 the Civil Rights Act of 1875, which, as has been said before, marked 
the culmination of the special favors bestowed upon the Negro by a Radical Congress, was 
declared unconstitutional on grounds similar to those enunciated in the two preceding cases. 
This decision was based on hearings in five separate cases involving the Negro's civil 
rights, which the Court considered as a unit, inasmuch as they all hinged upon the constitu 
tionality of the first two sections of the Act of 1875. The facts upon which the issues 
had been made up in these cases were: the exclusion of Negroes from hotels in Kansas 
and in Missouri, from the dress circle of a theater in San Francisco, from full enjoyment 
of accommodations in the Grand Opera House of New York City, and from a 'ladies' car" 
of the Memphis and Charleston Railroad Company. The Court held that these were acts 
of private persons, and that the sections of the Civil Rights Act extending Federal protec 
tion to citizens of the United States against such acts were not authorized by the Four 
teenth Amendment, which did not empower Congress to invade and destroy the police power 
of the States. 

By thus setting aside the Act of 1875 the Supreme Court virtually served notice upon 
the Negro that he was no longer "the ward of the nation," and that he must plunge into 
the stream of our common civic life and sink or swim. Indeed, the Court expressly 
declared : "When a man has emerged from slavery and, by the aid of beneficent legislation, 
has shaken off the inseparable concomitants of that State, there must be some stage in the 
progress of his elevation when he takes the rank of a mere citizen, and ceases to be the 
special favorite of the laws, and when his rights as a citizen or a man are to be protected 
in the ordinary modes by which other men's rights are protected." 

1 Collins, The Fourteenth Amendment and the States, 46-47. 

2 Collins, op. cit, 48. 

8 U. S. vs. Cruikshank, 92 U. S., 542. 


This decision put an end to direct legislation by Congress in behalf of the Negro 
race. It marks the close of the regime of special protection and the beginning of a regime 
of natural selection. Of the twenty-eight appeals for Federal intervention in support of the 
Negto's civil rights, as alleged to be guaranteed under the Fourteenth Amendment, only 
six were decided in favor of the complaining party. All six of these cases dealt with the 
right of Negroes to sit on juries, a topic that will be considered elsewhere in this report. 
On the other hand, the Supreme Court, in interpreting the Amendment, has held that a 
State may inflict a heavier penalty for the crimes of adultery and fornication when com 
mitted by persons of different races than when committed by persons of the same race; 
that it may separate the races on passenger trains; and that in general the Negro must 
seek his protection in the police power of his State, like any other citizen. The Court has 
also decided, indirectly, that a State may separate the races in the schools within its 
jurisdiction. 1 

As a result of the overthrow of the Civil Rights legislation of the Federal Government, 
the burden of securing these rights for the Negro has devolved upon the several States. 
So long as the Federal Government appeared to be actively intervening in behalf of the 
colored man the States of the North did very little in the matter. On the other hand, in 
the Southern States, which were then under the control of carpet-bag governments, there 
was a bumper crop of Civil Rights legislation. After 1883, however, the situation had 
become reversed. Southern legislatures were rapidly repealing the distasteful legislation of 
the Reconstruction period, and Northern legislatures, seeing that Federal intervention had 
proven a broken reed, began to enact measures designed to secure equal accommodations for 
both races in all public places. Many of the State laws practically duplicate the Federal 
statute of 1875. Nineteen states have enacted such measures, and twelve of these did so 
within two years after the Federal law was declared unconstitutional. 2 


In all communities where diverse elements of population are found in considerable 
numbers there is a noticeable tendency toward their differentiation and segregation. Our 
American cities have their Italian quarters, their Yiddish districts, and their China towns. 
The same phenomenon is observed wherever there is a large number of Negroes. In both 
Northern and Southern communities there are considerable areas inhabited almost exclu 
sively by members of the colored race. This voluntary segregation is generally accepted 
as a matter of course by members of both races, because it accords with their wishes. "All 
flesh consorteth according to kind, and a man will cleave unto his like." 

Inasmuch as the color line runs nearly parallel with the poverty line, living conditions 
in the Negro quarters of our cities closely resemble those of the slums. North and South 
the urban Negro population is to be found living in poorly built, insanitary dwellings, on 
filthy and neglected streets, and frequently in an atmosphere permeated with vice. It is 
quite natural that certain more prosperous members of the race should seek to escape from 
such untoward conditions and secure homes in more desirable sections. In doing this they 
are not necessarily seeking to force themselves upon their white neighbors, but may be 
attracted by the clean and well-paved streets, the well-kept homes, and the more generally 
wholesome environment. The Negroes as a race are not any more inclined than are the 

1 Collins, op. cit., 48-80. 

2 Stephenson, Race Distinctions in American Law, 111-124. 


whites to force themselves into places where they are not wanted, and even where individual 
colored citizens show any such tendency to intrude it will frequently be found that white 
sympathizers are egging them on. But it matters not for what reason a Negro may enter 
a white residence district, he is likely soon to discover that his arrival is most unwelcome to 
his new neighbors. In all parts of the country many and varied expedients have been 
employed to exclude the colored population from certain portions of our cities. In Kansas 
City, in 1909, the Tenth Ward Citizens' Association was formed for the purpose of forcing 
the removal of Negroes from a section of the tenth ward. 1 In the same city, in 1910 and 
1911, a number of Negro homes in a white residential section were dynamited. 2 In North 
Berkeley, Cal., the citizens organized to exclude Chinese, Japanese, and Negroes -from the 
best residence districts. 3 In St. Louis a Civic Realty Company was formed for the purpose 
of creating public sentiment against the selling of property to Negroes. 4 In Atlanta, in 1910, 
fifty real estate dealers agreed to lease or sell no property to Negroes within the limits of 
a district designated as white by a so-called Fourth Ward Progressive Club. 5 During the 
year 1911 trouble resulting from the purchase by Negroes of property in white residential 
sections was reported in Scranton, Pa., Kalamazoo, Mich., Logansport, Ind., and Seattle, 
Wash. 9 

The invasion of exclusively white blocks by ambitious, well-to-do Negroes is most 
likely to occur in cities which have a relatively small colored population and in which the 
Negroes have become accustomed to assert themselves more frequently than they do where 
the color line is drawn less loosely. This fact will explain why such a large proportion of 
the incidents just enumerated occurred in Northern rather than Southern cities. It is inter 
esting to note, however, that in many Southern communities the segregation of the races 
is by no means complete. It is not a very rare sight in some of the older towns of the 
lower South to find one or two unobtrusive Negro families living in the same block with 
the better class of whites. Such cases are no indication of the lack of racial antipathy; the 
whites merely tolerate the presence of the Negroes because the latter "know their place" 
and make no attempt to force themselves upon the attention of their neighbors. Instances 
of this kind are seldom observed in the newer towns, and are growing continually less 
common elsewhere, as both races seem to prefer to live apart. 

In addition to this general segregation, there are a number of instances of the com 
plete exclusion of Negroes from white communities and of whites from Negro communities. 
Among the towns which do not tolerate the presence of the colored man may be mentioned 
Comanche, Big Spring, Childress, Dalhart, Plainview, and Snyder, in the State of Texas ; 
Blackwell, Hominy, Miami, Norman, and Elk City, Oklahoma; Cullman (a German settle 
ment), and Fairhope (a colony of Northern single-taxers), in the State of Alabama; and 
Syracuse, in Ohio. Winston County, Alabama, with a total population, in 1910, of 12,885, 
contained only 54 Negroes. 

On the other hand, there are some thirty towns inhabited exclusively by Negroes, and 
also a large number of unincorporated Negro settlements. The most important of these 

1 The Crisis, 2:98. 
2 Ibid., 3:161-162. 
8 Ibid., 2 :98. 

4 Ibid., 1 :6-7. 

5 The city of Atlanta later passed an ordinance providing for the segregation of the 
races. Vide infra. 

6 The Crisis, February, May, and July, 1911. 


Negro communities is Boley, Okla., with a population, in 1910, of 1,334. This town owns 
and operates its own waterworks system, and has an electric light plant which is also owned 
and operated by Negroes. 

All these instances of racial segregation have been secured without formal legislative 
action. In recent years, however, a tendency has developed on the part of a number of 
Southern municipalities to enforce the separation of the races into different residence dis 
tricts by law. This movement is receiving increasing attention, and has already made some 
headway. If the experience of the cities which are testing this plan seems to justify it, and 
no constitutional obstacles are encountered, a very large number of other municipalities 
may be expected to employ some similar expedient. 

The legal segregation of the races in municipalities had its beginning in 1910. In that 
year the purchase of property by a Negro lawyer on McCulloch Street, a fashionable resi 
dence section of Baltimore, brought the matter to an issue in that city and resulted in the 
enactment, on December 19, of the so-called West segregation ordinance. 1 This measure 
provided that no white family should move into a block where a majority of the residents 
were Negroes, and that no Negro should occupy a residence in a block where a majority 
of the residents were white. The ordinace was at once tested in the courts, and, on 
February 4, 1911, was declared invalid. A second ordinance was then passed to meet the 
objections of the courts. This applied only to all-white and all-Negro blocks, and allowed 
blocks in which members of both races were residing to remain mixed until the residents 
came to belong wholly to one race. Some question as to the regularity of the passage of 
this measure was raised, and it was reenacted without change of phraseology. This measure, 
like the first, also encountered judicial obstacles and was held invalid by the Court of 
Appeals on the ground that it did not protect vested rights. Nothing daunted, the city 
council passed a fourth segregation ordinance on December 25, 1913. 

The example of Baltimore was quickly followed by the cities of Richmond, Norfolk, 
and Ashland, Virginia. The Richmond ordinance, enacted April 19, 1911, declares a block 
white when a majority of its residents are white, and colored when a majority of residents 
are colored. On March 12, 1912, the Virginia legislature passed a general State law per 
mitting municipalities so desiring to designate certain sections of their area for white and 
other sections for colored residents. In accordance with this statute, legal segregation was 
effected in Roanoke, Va., on March 15, 1913. 

Other cities which have adopted segregation ordinances are Greenville and Anderson, 
South Carolina; Greensboro and Winston-Salem, North Carolina; and Atlanta, Ga. The 
matter has been discussed in a number of other municipalities. The Atlanta ordinance, like 
that of Baltimore, does not apply to mixed districts, but only to blocks occupied wholly by 
members of one race. In Greenville, however, the ordinance applies when two-thirds of 
the residents are of the same race. In Norfolk the designation of the color of a block 
depends upon ownership, as well as occupancy. The block is black or white according as 
a majority of the frontage is owned or occupied by blacks or whites, respectively. To 
avoid constitutional difficulties, the law of Virginia and the ordinances of Richmond, Balti 
more, Norfolk, and Atlanta provide that no person shall be required to remove from the 
place where he was residing when the measure was passed. By several of these ordinances 
schools, churches, and other buildings are segregated, as well as residences. 

J The measure was named after Councilman George W. West, who fathered it. 


The constitutionality of these various ordinances has not yet been definitely passed 
upon. The first and third Baltimore ordinances were declared invalid because they inter 
fered with vested rights, but the courts upheld the constitutionality of the principle of segre 
gation. The ordinance of Winston-Salem was deemed invalid by the Supreme Court of 
North Carolina on the ground that a municipality could not enact such a measure without 
first obtaining legislative sanction therefor, but the real question at issue was not passed 

It is needless to discuss the constitutional aspects of this measure; for, as 
Mr. Gilbert T. Stephenson has well said, some constitutional method may always be found 
for the adoption of any policy that is wise and sound. Segregation, therefore, should be 
considered from the viewpoint of social justice. Advocates of municipal segregation by 
law defend it on racial, social, and economic grounds. The elimination of mixed blocks 
is desirable, it is said, because in them is found only the lowest element of the white 
population, and it is from such a grouping that miscegenation is most likely to arise. In 
the second place, racial antipathies are greatest between Negroes and the poorer whites, 
and the separation of these elements will promote law and order and reduce social friction 
to a minimum. Again, segregation is held to be desirable for economic reasons ; whenever 
Negroes move into a community real estate values tend to depreciate. Finally, it is argued, 
segregation has been developing by informal social action during a period of many years, 
and formal action by statute or ordinance only completes the process. 

The opponents of segregation do not deny that the presence of a Negro family in 
a city block tends to depress property values in their neighborhood, but they urge that the 
upward progress of a race should not be made to "depend on the price of land." It is 
claimed, also, that the segregated Negro quarters will be neglected by the municipal 
authorities so far as lighting, paving, drainage, sewerage, street cleaning, garbage collection, 
and policing are concerned, and that the Negroes will be restricted by law to living in the 
most undesirable parts of the city. The results of segregation in several cities are cited 
as already proving this contention. It is worthy of note, too, that when segregation was 
being discussed in Richmond a number of prominent white women appeared before the city 
council and urged that if the measure were enacted the needs of the Negroes should no 
longer be neglected. 


Until 1913, efforts to create separate residence districts for the races by law were 
confined to cities. In August of that year Mr. Clarence Poe, editor of the Progressive 
Farmer, formally advocated a plan for racial segregation in rural districts. He secured for 
it the unanimous endorsement of the North Carolina State Farmers' Union, and urged upon 
the North Carolina legislature the enactment of his plan into law. The author of the scheme 
summarizes it as follows: "Wherever the greater part of the land acreage in any given 
district that may be laid off is owned by one race, a majority of the voters in such a district 
shall have the right to say, if they wish, that in the future no land shall be sold to a person 
of a different race, provided such action is approved or allowed (as being justified by con 
siderations of peace, protection, and social life of the community) by a reviewing judge or 
board of county commissioners." 

An examination of this proposed measure will show that whatever may have been 
the intention of its framer, it will not in actual practice secure the complete segregation of 
the races in rural communities. Negroes owning land at the time the measure went into 


effect would not be affected, and colored laborers and tenants might still remain in the 
districts adopting the plan. Mr. Poe's plan is simply a scheme to enable the voters in 
any district to put an end to the sale of lands to Negroes. As very few Negroes vote, 
it would be impossible for them to exclude whites from any community, even if they out 
numbered the whites ten to one and owned the greater portion of the land. 

The author of this plan advances eight reasons for its adoption: (1) Rural segrega 
tion is necessary to give white farmers and their families a satisfying social life; (2) it 
will insure them greater safety and protection; (3) it will secure better schools, churches, 
and other agencies of community welfare for both races ; (4) it will make possible a greater 
degree of cooperation in rural communities, as racial divisions have proven a great barrier 
to cooperative enterprises; (5) it will improve the moral side of racial relationships; 
(6) by checking the crowding out of whites by blacks and providing all-white communities 
it will attract to the South a larger proportion of immigrants from other sections and 
countries than this region now receives; (7) segregation will make it possible for young 
men, who will not at present compete with negro labor, to go into the white districts as 
tenants, save and become independent landholders ; (8) it will protect certain rural districts 
from absentee landlords, who sell lands to Negroes regardless of the feelings of the white 

Every one familiar with conditions in the rural South will admit the existence of most 
of the evils of which Mr. Poe complains, but it does not follow therefrom that his plan 
offers a remedy. That there is an unmistakable tendency for the black counties to grow 
blacker is fully attested by the Federal census. This crowding of the whites by the blacks 
may not be attributed to the greater efficiency of the latter, as it has been clearly shown 
that the progress of the Negroes in the South varies almost inversely with their numerical 
ratio to the whole population. 1 The Negroes are most backward where they greatly out 
number the whites, and they crowd out the whites in these communities just as unskilled 
laborers with low standards of living tend to crowd out the more highly skilled workmen 
in industrial centers, and as Mongolian laborers have tended to crowd out Caucasians in 
our Pacific States. The principle of Gresham's law seems operative in the case of labor, 
as well as in that of money. 

But to admit these facts as stated by Mr. Poe is to cut the ground from under his 
argument for segregation. If the whites suffer from the presence of masses of unskilled, 
low-standard colored labor the obvious remedy is to take measures for increasing its skill 
and raising its standards. Segregation, instead of achieving this result, will work in the 
opposite direction, as experience fully proves that black districts tend to retrograde. The 
Negroes do best in those communities where they are outnumbered by the whites. If segre 
gation were in effect in any Southern community the most thrifty and industrious Negroes, 
desiring to acquire land, would be compelled to move elsewhere, leaving behind them the 
shiftless and inefficient of their race; and the last state of that community would be worse 
than the first. 

Mr. Stephenson has pointed out that the removal of the incentive on the part of a 
Negro tenant to acquire land of his own would tend to aggravate the already acute tenant 
problem; that efforts to bring about segregation in any rural district would intensify race 
friction ; and that after separation was achieved only the worst elements of both races would 

1 On this point consult the article by Dr. R. P. Brooks entitled, "A Local Study of the 
Race Problem," in the Political Science Quarterly, 26:201 f. 


be brought into contact with each other. 1 To these objections we might add the statement 
that if segregation in municipalities is likely to result in the neglect of the colored residence 
sections the same results would appear, and probably in much more aggravated form, in 
rural districts. Solidly black rural communities would hardly secure roads, bridges, schools, 
policing, and sanitary supervision of the same character as found in white communities in 
the same county. Morever, as the Negroes must take the least desirable sections of cities 
for their quarters, they would probably have to do likewise if they were segregated in the 
country; and each colored district might show a tendency to become a little bit of "darkest 
Africa," with deleterious results to both races. 

The principle of segregation in municipalities and in rural districts rests on an entirely 
different basis from that of racial segregation on railway trains and public places. In the 
latter case only personal rights are involved; in the former both rights of person and 
property. Moreover, where the races are separated in conveyances and public places, it is 
possible to give absolutely equal accommodations. In the case of municipal and rural 
segregation physical limitations make this obviously impossible. 


(Presented at the Fifth Meeting, Tuskegee Institute, May 6, 1915, by R. J. H. DeLoach, 

Chairman of the Committee) 

The chairman of this committee wishes to express regrets that he could not have had 
more constant contact with the members of the Commission, and especially of the Com 
mittee on Economics. It seems that a meeting together of the members of the committee 
would have brought out many ideas of practical value to its work. Correspondence is not 
satisfactory in matters of this kind. However, since we have had no meeting, we shall 
render separate reports as best we can, in the hope that something we have done may prove 
of value to the future workers and of interest to those thinking along these lines. 

The one theme that has been running through my mind is "The Basis of Efficiency," 
or the effect on the Negro race of some kind of definite training. I have wondered how 
much justice there is in the statement, "Education spoils the Negro," or "The Negro will 
not stand education." 

After all, the basis of progress is a question of education and its relation to our 
industrial life. There is more in knowing how to do a thing and then doing it than there 
is in knowing per se. If we can put this kind of a test to the Negro race, it seems that 
justice to ourselves as a race, as well as to the Negro himself, would cause us to issue an 
impartial statement of our investigations along this line. To make an investigation valuable, 
the investigator must set aside in the beginning any preconceived idea or sentiment that 
would tend to qualify his conclusions. Let the truth stand for itself. That certain kinds 
of training have seemed to prove ineffective in certain specific instances when applied to 
the Negro does not argue that all will fail under even any set of conditions. Perhaps the 
safety of the South, the conservation of her great natural resources, will depend on the 
training of her citizens for service. If so, it will hardly prove economical to restrict the 
training to any class or race. If better service can be rendered by training in any case, it 
ought to be so in every case, and it is to this phase of the race question that I have been 
devoting time and study. 

1 South Atlantic Quarterly, 13:107-117. 


What are the ordinary tests of fitness for service? Perhaps the most effective one 
is the fruits of trained servants. If these measure up to a high standard, the training has 
not been in vain. If efficiency proves to be in proportion to training, then it seems to me 
that we should be much concerned about the training itself. 

The three kinds of measurements that I have used among Negroes are as follows : 
Actual increase in yields of farm crops as a result of definite kinds of instruction, the 
results of club work among Negroes, and the relation of savings to citizenship. 

There may be other phases of the subject more important than these, but I have the 
facts to prove beyond a doubt that these are important. There are so many phases of any 
important question that the nature of an investigation of it must depend largely on the 
individual who undertakes it. It is a matter of taste and judgment as to just how one 
tackles the problem. 

Granting, then, that my own study of this question has been guided very largely by 
the problem as I see it, I turn now to a report on the facts that have come under my 


I have brought to the attention of this Commission before now my connection with a 
Farmers' Conference in Athens, Ga., composed entirely of Negro farmers, landowners, 
tenants, and day hands. There seemed to be no difference, when it came to interest, whether 
a man was a tenant or a landowner. At this conference, which was organized several 
years ago, the same farmers have been coming back every year and reporting on the progress 
they have made from year to year whether the instruction they have received has made 
them better farmers. They found it rather hard to get accurate measurements for quite a 
while. They overcame this, however, eventually, and learned to give rather accurate figures 
on all produce raised. We will take the two reports for the years 1912 and 1913 and see 
the difference, after very careful instruction in the winter, between the two crops grown, on 
proper diversification of crops, on deep cultivation, the proper application of fertilizers, and 
top-dressing of winter grain with nitrate of soda. The following table shows the result: 

Crops 1912 1913 

Bushels corn raised 10,221 12,636 

Bushels oats raised 2,830 4,923 

Bushels wheat raised 743 1,065 

Bushels rye raised 42 64^2 

Bales cotton raised 1,072 1,136 

Bales hay raised 5,342 6,972 

Landed possessions 2,850.7 acres 3,066.7 acres 

Land cultivated 2,762 acres 2,706 acres 

Greatest yield per acre of corn 50 bushels 75 bushels 

Greatest yield per acre of cotton 1^ bales 2 bales 

Live Stock Owned 

Mules, head 126 127 

Horses, head 40 37 

Cows, head , 125 130 

Hogs, head 185 225 


It will be observed that the members of this conference owned more acres but culti 
vated less acres in 1913 than in 1912. It will also be observed that they raised far bigger 
crops in 1913 than in 1912. In fact, they actually produced $8,867 more farm produce in 
1913 than in 1912, and they did it on 56 acres less land. The conference cost them prac 
tically nothing; it lasts two days annually, and many of the members return home at night 
to look after the farm. They increased their earning capacity about $88 per capita in one 
year by getting definite instruction in the elementary principles of agriculture. The tenants 
learned the lessons and used them. The hired hands did the same. They made more for 
the landowners and for themselves. These are facts, not theories. There are other con 
ferences in different places doing just as good work. 

I would like to have time to tell many interesting things about this one conference, 
but time does not permit. I must go on to the next division of the work. 


I wish that I might have had the time and what little funds I needed to get together 
this information. My own State, Georgia, has practically no Negro club work at all. The 
three States that are active along this line, and from which I get my information, are Vir 
ginia, North Carolina, and Oklahoma. Prof. N. C. Newbold, State Agent Rural Schools 
for North Carolina, has given me much assistance in getting together the information from 
that State, and a colored teacher, Miss Annie Peters, has helped me to get information about 

In North Carolina there are fourteen counties organized in this work, and the General 
Education Board gives $884 with which to pay the salaries of the instructors. Each county 
has a definite program of work and an instructor for a definite period of time. In some 
counties as much as fourteen weeks are given to club work, while in others four weeks 
are given. To do the work in all these counties requires more than one instructor doing 
work at any one time. The entire time devoted to the work equals 132 weeks of service. 
The first question that arises in the mind of a Southern-born person is, "Will the 
Negro take to this kind of work with any degree of seriousness?" 

The following figures will answer this query. There were organized in the State 73 
boys' and girls' clubs and 25 men's and women's clubs. Enrolled in these clubs were 580 boys 
and girls and 316 men and women. Three hundred and seven gardens were cultivated 
under the direction of the supervisor, and there was a total of 793 people cultivating 
gardens. In this short report we have time to deal only with totals for the entire fourteen 

There were canned in 1914 : 

7,466 cans tomatoes. 
6,790 cans corn and other vegetables. 
17,197 cans fruits apples, peaches, pears. 
7,857 cans berries. 
4,367 cans fruits, preserves, etc. 
4,575 glasses jelly. 
256 jars pickles and catsup. 


This makes a total of 49,301 cans of vegetables, fruits, preserves, jellies, and pickles, 
which, valued at the low average of 15 cents per can, would be worth $7,395. The instruction 
for this cost only $844, as we stated above, which leaves $6,551 to the credit of the venture, 
or an average of $7.35 per person enrolled. 

Presuming that the training received even more than paid for the time and work of 
the students, every dollar invested returned $7.35, to say nothing of the lift it gave to the 

The following summarizes the reports of agents from some of the counties; quota 
tions from reports of agents: 

"At least $150 for three locations." "Aside from practical knowledge of gardening 
given, work has meant a saving of at least $700 to the families in the county." "About 
$95.00 to $100.00" (meaning value of canned goods). "A higher standard was set in com 
munities where this work was carried on." "It was very gratifying to see the interest 
manifested by the mothers and even the fathers." "A start in good gardens." "Work 
done worth thousands of dollars in the future." "The work has aroused much interest in 
home gardening." "In many cases the women were more eager to learn than the girls." 
"The work has meant much." "The work has been a decided success." "The women and 
girls were highly pleased in learning to can the new way." "The people have thanked me 
over and over for the help I have given thm." "Worth about $200.00." 

In many places it is thought that this kind of work among Negroes would find very 
little or no support from State and county officials along educational lines. On the con 
trary, we find just the opposite, as will be shown from the following comments on the 
work made by the county superintendents of education: 

"It is hard to estimate the value . . . They tell me many families have saved 
supplies for the winter, whereas before they did not save anything." "I hope the work 
will be continued." "I am favorably impressed, and think the work well worth the money." 
"I heartily endorse the work. It is encouraging to see with what enthusiasm the people 
are taking hold of it." "We hope to continue the work." "The people are interested, and 
the work has been a success." 

From Oklahoma we get good reports, but the information is not so well wrought out. 
In that State 584 boys and girls have joined the clubs, and some of them have won prizes 
at county fairs, and many have canned food for winter supplies. One girl put up 75 cans 
of vegetables for home use. 

The third phase of the subject to which I have devoted attention is the Relation of 
Savings to Citizenship, or whether the Negro who saves is more desirable as a neighbor 
than the one who fails to save. 

I have also planned to investigate if the habit of saving goes hand in hand with 
training and efficiency, and how the Negro who saves is regarded by his white neighbors. 
This is a big question, and will require time to work out. 

For collecting this data I have had the cooperation of the Phelps-Stokes Fellow in 
the University of Georgia and of Dr. H. W. Odum, Professor of Rural Education. 

Blanks have been printed and circulated by an Athens banker to other bankers 
throughout the State of Georgia, asking for amounts deposited in the banks by Negroes, 
and for the names of Negroes, so the question can be taken up directly with the depositors. 
Many difficulties are in the way of this piece of work, but the following shows the general 
drift of the investigation: 


Certain elementary conclusions are evident from the study of results. First: It is 
very difficult to obtain information concerning Negro thrift. Second : The amount of 
Negro deposits in banks is small. Third: The banks, as a rule, make no effort to obtain 
Negro deposits. Fourth : In some cases such deposits are discouraged. Fifth : The atti 
tude of the average bank reporting shows little interest in the subject and the usual 
dogmatism. Sixth : There are exceptions showing interest in this question. Seventh : 
There are numerous exceptions showing thrift among the Negroes. 

Further conclusions concerning the details of thrift may be gained from an examina 
tion of the following facts: 

(1) Some 40 per cent of the banks to whom questionnaires were sent replied. 

(2) Of these replies, about 16 per cent gave us little or no information. 

(3) Of the Negro depositors, the following occupations were represented: merchants, 
farmers, laborers, servants, laundresses, teachers, ministers, housekeepers, draymen, mail 
carriers, hotel keepers, and a few skilled workers. 

(4) Of these, fully 60 per cent were farmers, the next in order being laborers, 
servants, teachers, merchants, ministers. 

(5) The deposits ranged from $1,000, the largest, to 4 cents, the smallest, while the 
average deposit was $88.36. 

(6) The length of time in which the deposit has been carried varied from twelve 
years to a few months, the average being about \ l /2 years. 

(7) Of the depositors, the most common amounts reported were between $20.00 and 
$30.00 and between $100.00 and $200.00. 

(8) Some of the banks wrote that the Negroes' accounts meant nothing, and were 
more trouble than they were worth. One wrote: "We have no accounts, and want none." 
Another wrote: "Negroes can not stand prosperity, so what's the use of wasting time 
with them? All that a Negro needs is something to eat and wear. A big per cent of the 
criminals are Negroes that can read and write, and most of the murderers are Negroes 
that are educated Negroes. If a Negro gets money he is sure to invest it in a place where 
you would rather he would not be. A city might need increase in thrift, and raise the 
Negroes to a higher standing, but the country needs more work done." 

(9) Some 15 banks reported no Negro deposits at all. 


In Alabama alone the Negroes own and control 5,100,000 acres of land, or 
350,000 acres more than they controlled in 1900. They actually farm 3,563,000 acres, or 
500,000 more than they farmed in 1900. In ten years the number of Negro farmers increased 
over 17 per cent. 

The soil will forever remain the basis of our source of supplies, and we should be 
interested in any movement to improve the soil, and especially if, by so doing, we shall be 
able to improve, at the same time, the citizens who till the soil. Laying aside all feeling 
in the matter, it should be our desire to help foster justice and happiness among any people 
that contribute largely to our own happiness. If by making the Negro a better producer 
we can as easily make him a better citizen and a happier individual, how shall we justify 
ourselves in a failure to do this? Booker Washington said: "In nine cases out of ten, 
where a Negro in the South is found owning property, he has had an individual white man 
or a group of Southern white men to help guide and encourage him in this respect." 
(Atlanta Journal, January 13, 1910.) 


In "A Social Study of the Race Problem/' by Dr. R. P. Brooks, we find from his 
investigations that the Negro is a better citizen and is thought better of among his white 
neighbors in communities where there are few of them in proportion to the whites. This 
study indicates a need of increasing the whites in proportion to the blacks, which he sug 
gests might be done in two ways, viz.: by the emigration of Negroes to other sections of 
the country, and by encouraging the immigration of white people to the South. 

Dr. Brooks also concluded from his investigation that (page 210) a system of land 
tenure, known as the "Standing Rent System," is the cause of much thriftlessness among 
Negroes, while the Negro prefers this to the other prevailing system called "Cropping 
System," by which the renter pays a certain per cent of the crops, and the landlord super 
vises in a measure the operations of the farm. It was found that the Negro preferred 
freedom even at the expense of a better livelihood. In the counties where the whites 
largely outnumbered the blacks the Cropping System prevailed and the Negroes became 
more thrifty and eventually became landowners. 

The first published report of the Phelps-Stokes Fellowship at the University of 
Georgia, by T. J. Woofter, Jr., shows clearly the necessity for better training among the 
Negro servants. There is a great financial loss to the white homes of the South on account 
of the inefficiency of Negro servants. Besides, their ignorance of the laws of health makes 
us question the safety of employing such help at all. When they are a little better trained 
they desert the homes and do other things. Adjustment is much needed here. 

In the second published report of the Phelps-Stokes Fellowship of the University of 
Georgia, by W. B. Hill, it was discovered that there were 912 Negro farmers in the County 
of Clarke, while there were only 470 white farmers. Fourteen per cent of the Negroes 
owned their farms, while 37 per cent of the farmers owned the farms they were working. 
While there was a much larger per cent of white farmers owning their land, yet almost 
as many Negroes own farms in Clarke County as white. In fact, 127 Negroes and 163 whites 
own farms in the county. It was learned in this investigation that a lack of training on 
the part of Negroes proves very costly. 

The Phelps-Stokes Fellow at the University of Georgia this year is Mr. W. H. 
Johnston, who is working on the present status of Negro education in Georgia. From 
his findings up to the present time it would seem that the efforts along this line are so 
meager that they could almost be considered wasted. The work is inadequate and spread 
out so thin that it makes very little impression on the race. 

Governor O'Neal, a few days ago, while on a visit to Tuskegee, said of Alabama : "If 
we take our proper position as a State in agricultural development, the scientific knowledge 
and skill which we furnish from our schools and institutions must be furnished to every 
man that tills the soil in this State if we are to reach the highest agricultural development. 

"Again, can any State afford to leave any portion of its population in ignorance? 
Elementary education should be the birthright of every son and every daughter of the 
State, because ignorance has ever been the deadly foe of free government." 

Reverting, then, to the idea with which we set out in this report, if we wish efficiency, 
and if the basis of efficiency is special training and instruction, and if the safety of the 
State and of the health of the people shall depend on efficiency which comes only by 
instruction, then I am prepared to believe that the South will awake and press forward to 
its completion this great work of racial adjustment by making a close study of the needs 
of her citizenship and then supplying this need. 




(By R. G. Sanford, Student in the University of Tennessee. Presented at the Fourth 
Meeting, Washington, D. C, December 15, 1914, by Prof. James D. Hoskins) 

A survey of the city shows that the Negro of Knoxville has made much progress 
during recent years. His present condition is not ideal, by any means, but is such as 
should cause satisfaction to the people of this city, since it shows progress. 

The Negro has made consistent gains in savings, and to-day we find a very good pro 
portion of the Negroes owning homes and carrying bank accounts. The cashiers and 
presidents of the banks have been called upon and asked to give estimates as to the number 
of depositors, both white and black, and an estimate as to the average size of each race's 
account. The estimates were made in a careful and conservative way. When we take 
into account the number of banks called upon, and the fact that they represent the savings 
of the city and county, we can see the value of such an investigation. The result of this 
investigation shows, first: that the relative size of the Negro account is small as compared 
with that of the white man; and, second: that the number of Negro bank accounts as 
compared with the white is small. The average bank account of the Negro is about 
$50.00 as compared with the average white account of about $300.00. There is a total of 
1,300 Negro depositors out of a population for the county of 12,709. Then only 10 per cent 
are depositors at the bank. There are 35,000 white depositors out of a population of 81,476, 
which means that 43 per cent carry bank accounts. The county was taken for the basis 
of comparison, since the banks more nearly represent the savings of the county. Although 
the number and average size of the colored bank account is small, it shows progress. We 
must not forget that the Negro started fifty years ago without anything. When he was 
released from the bonds of slavery he knew nothing of saving or thrift as compared with 
the white man. He had only been civilized then for about half a century. He was young 
in the civilized world to work beside the older and stronger man of many centuries of 
civilization. The complexity of modern civilization was too great for a people of so simple 
life. We should feel gratified at his gains, although his present holdings appear small as 
compared with the white man. 

The colored man has learned some valuable lessons from the white. It seems that 
the white people of Knoxville have shown a friendlier disposition to help the Negro than 
the average Southern city. We can see the value of this cooperation when we see that the 
domestic servant is the best class of savers among the Negro race, for in this service the 
Negro is brought in close contact with the white race and in a friendlier spirit than in 
any other work the Negro performs. The family in whose home the Negro is working 
takes an interest in the cook or maid and insists that she begin a savings account. Some 
banks have found it necessary to make some discrimination in opening accounts with 
Negroes because they tend to run very short-time accounts, with expense unproportionate 
to the value of the account. By far the greater number of the colored accounts are found 
in the savings department. Among other interesting points of information, there are 
quite a number of one-dollar accounts among the Negroes; on the other hand, there are 
Negroes carrying sufficient deposits to write checks running up into the thousands of 


The Negroes have saved sufficient amounts to buy homes. During the last fifteen or 
twenty years there has been a remarkable increase in home owning among the Negroes. 
This statement is based upon estimates given by a number of real estate managers, cashiers 
of banks, and leaders among the colored race. The estimates of the percentage of increased 
home owning have varied considerably, but considering as my best source of authority the 
companies that have been in business over the longest period of time and have undoubtedly 
made the greatest number of real estate sales, since they have the largest part of the busi 
ness, I state that there has been an increase in home owning during the period just men 
tioned of 100 per cent. I give this as a very conservative estimate. One man in a position 
to know estimated the increase as high as 400 per cent. While there has been this great 
increase in home owning, there is as yet a relatively small number of Negroes who now 
own their homes. I would say that 30 per cent would be a fair estimate, averaging all the 
Negro sections of the city. 

The condition of the Negro homes will not favorably compare with the homes of 
the white people of Knoxville as a whole; a fair percentage of the Negro homes are in 
moderately gpod condition. 

This leads to the discussion of segregation. The Negroes have segregated themselves 
in three or four sections of the city, the two principal segregated districts being Mechanics- 
ville, in North Knoxville, and a section of East Knoxville, with Vine Street as a central 
street running east and west. This segregation is the result of natural conditions working 
to the best interest of all, as was suggested by a prominent Negro leader and emphasized 
by some white leaders. The Negroes bought out the property of the whites in each section 
gradually. People who live in the Negro section say that the property has not decreased in 
value as a result of the increased number of Negro homes ; rather the property has 
increased in value in the same proportion as the other property in the city. 

Next, and closely allied to the savings, is the credit of the Negro. The Negro 
abuses the credit system ; that is, a proportionately greater number of Negroes ask for 
credit than do the whites. Twice as many whites trade with installment credit stores as 
do the Negroes, but, considering the population of one Negro to six whites, we find that 
the Negro frequents these stores three times as often as do the whites. The result of a 
visit with a pawnshop proprietor showed that, according to the population, the Negro fre 
quents this place of business six times as often as does the white man. 

As a debtor the Negro account is held more valuable than the white man on the 
same economic plane. All men consulted on this point the installment house, the collection 
agency, and the real estate firms' representatives were agreed on this question. The prin 
cipal reasons advanced as to why the Negro account was more valuable than the white are : 
First, that while heads of the families of the two races are working for the same amount, 
the Negro family has an additional source of income because the Mother and children 
find employment of various kinds. Second, the living expense of the Negro family is less 
than that of the white. Third, the Negro is less intelligent and, therefore, more easily 
forced to pay his obligations. Fourth, the Negro is more honest. This may have some 
value when we think of the Negro as a young and innocent race as compared with the white 
race of much maturity in the scale of civilization. 

As a social problem we are interested in finding out the tendency of the Negro toward 
poverty. Under this head we are interested in the results of the investigation of the 
Associated Charities, of the County Alms House, and the Free Clinic. The annual report 
of the Associated Charities for the year ending November 1, 1914, shows that 792 white 


families applied for help as compared with 71 Negro families. This means that the white 
man calls for charity twice as often as does the Negro. The usual relief given the Negro 
was employment, while that given the white man was more often material aid. When we 
turn our attention to the County Alms House we find nearly the same results as estab 
lished by the Associated Charities. There are sixty whites to six Negroes. The third 
institution to be treated under poverty brings out the exception to the rule established in 
the two institutions first considered. At the Free Clinic there are two Negroes to receive 
free treatment to one white man. 

It has been suggested that the condition of the Negro in Knoxville is probably better 
than in most other cities of the South. The factors determining his well-being are: First, 
fewness in numbers means greater opportunities. Second, good advice from the leaders of 
his own race who have made a success. Third, the friendly disposition of the two races 
and the good advice of the whites. 

In the conclusion of this paper I want to sum up, as briefly as possible, the results 
of the survey. First, as to the savings in comparison with the whites, the number of Negro 
bank depositors is small, and so is the relative size of their accounts. The Negro has 
increased in home owning during the last fifteen years at a rapid rate; the condition of 
his home is from poor to fair ; still a relatively small per cent own their homes. Second, 
segregation has been brought about by a natural law. Third, the Negro abuses the credit 
system, but is considered a better debtor than the white man on the same economic plane. 
Fourth, as to poverty, out of the three relief institutions, two show that he does not call 
for help in proportion to his numbers. Fifth, the factors that have meant most to his well- 
being in Knoxville are good leaders among his own race who have made a success, good 
advice from the whites, and, last, fewness in numbers has meant greater opportunity. 


Of the total population of 2,184,789 for the State of Tennessee, 473,088, or 21.7 per 
cent, are Negroes. That is, there is an average for the State of four whites to one Negro. 
There has been a decrease in the population of the State, 1900-1910, of 1 per cent of 
Negroes as compared with an increase of 8.1 per cent for the entire population of the State. 
Of the total 473,088 Negroes, there are 114,544 in the four principal cities. About one- 
fourth of the Negroes live in these cities, and nearly half of this number live in Memphis. 
There we find 52,441, or 40 per cent, of the total population of the city are Negroes. Nash 
ville has a total Negro population of 36,523, which represents 23.1 per cent of her total 
population. There is then a total of 358,544 Negroes living outside of these four principal 
cities. They are living in the small towns and rural sections. Of the total number (246,375) 
of Negroes engaged in gainful occupations, 107,933 are engaged in the three principal 
agricultural groups, or nearly 50 per cent of the Negroes do farm labor. The next largest 
group is that of domestic and personal service of 62,598 Negroes, or about 25 per cent. The 
next in order is the unskilled trades group of 30,000, or about 8 per cent. The remaining 
17 per cent are scattered among the skilled trades and professions. 

The rural conditions were studied by means of a questionnaire conducted in our State 
University. The questions were given to the upper-classmen. The papers received were 
from forty-one pupils, representing 29 counties, distributed over the State" in the following 
proportion : East Tennessee 7, Middle Tennessee 12, and West Tennessee 10. The answers 
given to the questions are based on estimates. They are valuable, since they show, in the 
main, what seems to be the conditions prevailing in Tennessee. 


These reports show that a small number of Negroes pay cash rent for their land, 
probably 15 per cent, and that about 75 per cent of the Negroes living on the farm pay 
rent by share; probably about 10 per cent of the Negroes in the rural districts own their 
homes. The papers were explicit and uniform in the conclusion as to the conditions of the 
homes of all the Negroes on the farm, namely, that they are in poor condition. On the 
question pertaining to the numbers who owned sufficient work stock to make a crop with, 
and the condition of the same, the papers showed that about one-fourth of the Negroes 
owned sufficient stock, that the stock was poorly cared for and is of a cheap grade. The 
greater portion of the Negroes about three-fourths buy their supplies on a credit. The 
last question was intended to find out the efficiency of the Negro as compared with 
foreigners. Since the number of foreigners in the State is so small only 18,459, or less 
than 1 per cent of the total population of the State the answer to this question can not 
be of so much general value. But in every case where there was an appreciable number 
of foreigners they were reported to be far more thrifty and efficient than the Negro. 



The press of the State has recently published a letter purporting to come from a 
committee of the mob which lynched the Negro at Stuttgart. Of course they seek to 
justify their action. In view of this and of other lynchings in this and other States, the 
following facts, as given in the address of the Race Commission last winter, (Jan. 5, 1916), 
ought to be of interest to the Stuttgart committee and to the people of the State: 

[Here follow the statistics.] 

The Stuttgart committee signed themselves, "Yours for the proper and unfailing 
enforcement of the law." "On the contrary, if the law were enforced now you would be 
on the way to the gallows," I would say to this committee. "You are undermining all 
respect for the law. One of the dearest rights to every American is the right of trial in 
open court, yet you have robbed the victim of this right. In doing this you have paved the 
way to- the violation of other rights. Where will it end? The above figures show that 
lynching is now used for trivial crimes, sometimes, no doubt, for personal spite or vengeance. 
Lynching is a serious social disease, and you are helping to spread it. Six Negroes were 
lynched last week, one in Texas and five in Florida. 

"You say that your victim was charged with a heinous crime. True, and if guilty he 
deserved the extreme penalty of the law. You say that he confessed to you. Granted. 
Then people who believe in the death penalty must admit that he deserved to die. 

"But in civilized countries only one authority is allowed to kill the State. You have 
lynched both the victim and the law. 

"Why have you done this? Perhaps you will say, 'Because of the law's delays. If 
left to the courts, there not only would have been delay, he might even have failed of 

"You also claim to have hanged him in as humane a manner as possible. His death, 
you claim, was much more humane than that of Sir Roger Casement recently executed in 
England for treason. 


"But let us compare your action with that of the English people. Treason is a fear 
ful crime, yet they left it to the courts. So far as I have seen, there was no talk of lynching. 
Indeed, I think that lynching is practically unknown in England. There was little delay 
in the courts, and there was punishment. 

"Our courts sometimes are slow, and there are exasperating delays, but will lynching 
the accused improve the courts? Why not begin on our judges, lawyers, and juries? Can 
we not make our courts as good as those of the English people, whose descendants we are 
and whose courts we borrowed? Yet they never can equal the English courts until they 
are backed by equal respect for the law on the part of the people. Then we shall have 
no such outbreaks of lynchings as frequently occur in Georgia and occurred last week in 

As there are no "obvious reasons" for withholding my name, I sign: 

"Yours for the proper and unfailing enforcement of the law," including the sup 
pression of lynchings, 



Abbott, Lyman, 50. 

Bain, Mrs. C. W., 25. 
Banks, Charles, 52. 
Battle, K. P., 37. 
Bell, J. C., 24, 27, 31. 
Blackwell, R. E., 13. 
Booker, J. A., 52. 
Boyd, W. K., 35. 
Brooks, E. C., 35. 
Bryant, R. H., 40. 

Caldwell, B. C., 39. 
Campbell, R. F., 40. 
Casement, Sir Roger, 72. 
Chase, H. W., 37. 
Clark, Willis, 40. 
Collins, C. W., 56. 
Cook, G. B., 51. 
Crandall, Miss Prudence, 55. 

Daniels, John, 55. 
Davis, Jackson, 13, 28. 
Dusenbury, C. B., 40. 

Feagin, W. F., 27. 
Few, W. P., 32, 33, 35, 36. 
Flowers, R. L., 35. 
Frissell, H. B., 16, 43. 
Frissell, Mrs. H. B., 43. 

Galloway, C. B., 53. 
Glasson, W. H., 35, 36. 
Glocker, T. W., 27. 
Graham, E. K., 36. 

Hamilton, J. G. DeR., 37. 
Hammond, Mrs. J. D., 6, 43, 54. 
Harris, W. T., 50. 
Haynes, G. E., 43. 
Henderson, Archibald, 37. 
Hill, W. B., 68. 

(Not including members of Commission) 

Hoffman, F. L., 51. 
Hope, John, 42. 

Jackson, B. J., 40. 

Jameson, J. F., 6, 7. 

Johnson, President Andrew, 56. 

Johnston, W. H., 68. 

Jones, T. J., 20, 41. 

Kincannon, A. A., 6, 8. 

Laprade, W. F, 35. 
Leavell, R. H., 41. 
Lee, W. S., 40. 
Leyburn, E. R., 33, 34. 

McKissick, Rion, 14. 
Merrick, John, 34. 
Michael, J. H., 40. 
Monroe, Charles, 20. 
Montgomery, Isaiah, 52. 
Moore, A. M, 33. 
Moton, R. R., 16, 41, 52. 
Munford, Mrs. B. B., 14. 
Murphy, E. G., 54. 

Newbold, N. C., 65. 
Noble, M. C. S., 36. 

Odum, H. W., 66. 
O'Neal, Emmet, 68. 

Page, W. H., 54. 
Peabody, G. F., 41. 
Pennington, J. W. C., 55. 
Peters, Miss Annie, 65. 
Poe, Clarence H., 36, 61, 62. 
Price, Joseph, 52. 

Quillian, C. F., 38. 

Ramsey, D. H., 40. 
Rankin, E. L., 36. 



Raper, C. L., 36. 
Reynolds, C. V., 40. 
Riley, W. B., 31. 
Rosenwald, Julius, 41. 
Rushton, J. W., 26. 

Sanford, R. G., 22, 69. 
Sanford, W. H., 28. 
Scott, E. J., 31. 
Sibley, J. L, 25. 
Snaveley, T. R., 41. 
Spalding, C. C., 34. 
Spingarn, J. E., 6, 12, 13. 
Stacy, M. H., 36, 37. 
Stephenson, G. T., 55, 58, 61. 
Stockton, C. H., 20, 21. 
Stokes. A. P., 19, 23, 32. 
Stone, A. H., 54. 

Tyson, F. D., 41. 
Venegar, E. T., 52. 

Walker, J. W., 40. 

Washington, B. T., 28, 29, 30, 52, 55, 67. 

Weatherford, W. D., 5, 25, 38, 49, 54. 

West, G. W., 60. 

Williams, H. H., 37. 

Williams, W. T. B., 31, 41. 

Wilson, T. J., 36, 37. 

Wilson, President Woodrow, 18. 

Woofter, T. J., Jr., 6, 41, 68. 

Work, M. N., 42. 

Yates, William, 55. 




Book Slip-Series 458 

N9 537290 

University Commission 
on Southern Race 

Minutes of the Univer 
sity commission on south 
ern race questions.