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Hugh M. Gloster papers

 Collection — Box: 1-89, OS 1-4
Identifier: 0000-0000-0000-0081

Scope and contents

This collection documents the life and work of Hugh M. Gloster, a college president, administrator, teacher, writer, speaker, and military executive. The collection dates from 1900-2004 with the bulk of the materials dating from 1943 to 1985. It includes personal papers, correspondence, biographical materials, and items related to many members of his family.

Dr. Gloster was a prolific writer. He wrote many poems, plays, jokes, and papers about politics, education, and race. A significant portion of the collection is related to a plethora of speeches that Dr. Gloster delivered while serving as a professor and president at Hampton Institute, Morehouse College, LeMoyne-Owen College, and while working abroad. Dr. Gloster conducted and collected a vast amount of research on notable writers and authors such as Zora Neale Hurston, James Baldwin, Charles Chestnutt, Phillis Wheatley, and many more. He also researched topics such as negro poetry, negro fiction, negro colleges, and Africa.

Dr. Gloster was President of Morehouse College for twenty years. This series contains materials related to his time as president, president emeritus, and the founding of the Morehouse School of Medicine. The Presidential Papers sub-series consists of materials related to commencement, campus life, and administrative matters. There are also materials from the Board of Trustees, the Office of the President, and the Atlanta University Center Records. These materials include correspondence, board reports, meeting minutes, and proposals.

The President Emeritus sub-series contains materials after his retirement as president of the college. Those items include his work on committees, correspondence between presidents, staff, and professors at various colleges and universities, and his work abroad in several countries.

The Morehouse School of Medicine sub-series contains materials related to the Board of Trustees and other materials related to the development of the school. There are also printed and published materials related to the college as well as some of Dr. Gloster's teaching materials while a professor at Morehouse. Also included in the collection are his teaching materials and administrative materials from Hampton Institute and LeMoyne-Owen College.

The Hampton Institute series contains his work as a Fulbright Scholar in Japan, his work as a visiting professor in Warsaw Poland with the state department, his work as director of the summer session program, and as a professor of English at New York University. There are materials related to the various organizations that Dr. Gloster was affiliated with, which includes the College Language Association (CLA) that he founded in 1949 and served as the first president, the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, and the Southern Regional Council. The collection also contains many photographs documenting Dr. Gloster's personal and professional life.


  • Creation: 1900-2004


Access restrictions

This series contains restricted materials. Materials in this series, such as student grades and other materials containing personal information, have also been restricted due to the nature of the information in the materials and cannot be accessed.

Rights statement

All materials in this collection are either protected by copyright or are the property of the Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center, Inc., and/or the copyright holder as appropriate. For more information, please contact

Biographical note

Hugh M. Gloster, President of Morehouse College (1967-1987), was professionally active as an administrator, teacher, writer, speaker, USO wartime executive, and American representative in educational and technical programs in foreign countries.

Dr. Gloster was born on May 11, 1911 in Brownsville, TN to John and Dora Gloster. A member of Phi Beta Kappa, Dr. Gloster held high school and junior college diplomas from LeMoyne College, and a B.A Degree in English from Morehouse College. He received his M.A. degree from Atlanta University, and later completed his Ph.D. in English at New York University.

He held honorary doctorates from Emory University, Hampton University, LeMoyne-Owen College, Mercer University, Morehouse College, Morehouse School of Medicine, Morgan State University, New York University, St. Paul's College, the University of Haiti, Washington University, and Wayne State University.

Prior to assuming the presidency of Morehouse College in 1967, Dr. Gloster held teaching positions at LeMoyne and Morehouse Colleges, as well as administrative positions with the United Service Organization (USO) and Hampton Institute. During World War II, he was the USO Program Director at Fort Huachuca and USO Associate Regional Executive in Atlanta.

Following World War II, he served as Chairman of the Communications Center (Division of Language and Literature), Director of Summer Session, and Dean of Faculty at Hampton Institute. He twice served at New York University as a Visiting Professor of American Literature, first at Washington Square College and later in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

A prolific writer, Dr. Gloster authored many articles and gave numerous lectures on American Literature and education. He also authored and edited several books including, Negro Voices in American Fiction, The Brown Thrush, andMy Life - My Country - My World.

Dr. Gloster also participated in overseas educational programs sponsored by the U.S. Department of State. From 1953-1955, he was the Fulbright Professor of English at Hiroshima University in Japan. In 1961-1962, he served as Visiting Professor of English in the International Educational Exchange Program at the University of Warsaw in Poland. Dr. Gloster further participated as a Professor of English in the American Specialists Program at the universities of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, Cracow, Poland, and Valencia, Spain.

Under the auspices of the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education (NAFEO), Dr. Gloster participated with other Black college presidents in visits to Haiti, Puerto Rico, India, Taiwan, Kenya, Morocco, and Mexico to develop and facilitate exchange programs for faculty and students.

Dr. Gloster served as a member of several presidential commissions appointed by U.S. government agencies to further international education and relations. In 1984, he represented the U.S. Department of Education in travel to the People's Republic of China to develop an exchange program. In 1986, he was a delegate to the Republic of South Africa, under the sponsorship of USAID, to recommend steps that public and private organizations could take to upgrade education for Blacks in that country.

As President of Morehouse College, Dr. Gloster's tenure resulted in the development and establishment of the Morehouse School of Medicine, which became an independent institution in 1981. Dr. Gloster also established eight new majors and a duel engineering program with Georgia Tech, and established a major in International Studies supported by programs in African Studies and Caribbean Studies.

Dr. Gloster was the founder, former president, and life member of the College Language Association, and an Advisory editor to the College Language Association Journal. He also served as a member of the Board of Trustees or Directors of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Center for Social Change, Morehouse College, the Morehouse College School of Medicine, Atlanta University, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, and the United Negro College Fund. He was a former Vice President and President of the Association of Private Colleges and Universities in Georgia.

Dr. Gloster married Dr. Beulah H. Gloster, a Professor of English, Director of the Writing Laboratory, and Hostess of the College. They had three children, Alice Gloster, Evelyn Gloster Dawkins, and Hugh M. Gloster.


49 Linear feet (91 document boxes, 2 oversize boxes, 1 microfilm box,1 business card box)

Language of Materials



This collection is arranged into ten series: 1. Personal Papers; 2. Morehouse College; 3. LeMoyne-Owen College; 4. Hampton Institute; 5. Writings by Gloster; 6. Writings by Others; 7. Correspondence; 8. Organizations; 9. Printed and Published Materials; and 10. Photographs. All of the series are further divided into sub-series. The contents of the series are arranged alphabetically. See series notes for more details.

Hugh M. Gloster Papers, 1880-2004
Finding prepared by Stacy Jones, 2023 February
February 2023
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center, Inc. Repository


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