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Morehouse College Office of the Presidents, 1890-1967

Identifier: 0000-0000-0000-0372

Scope and contents

The material in this collection is comprised of administrative, institutional, and personal documents created by five past presidents of Morehouse College: Dr. John Hope (1906-1931), Samuel Archer (1931-1937, Charles Hubert (1937-1940), Benjamin E. Mays (1940-1967), and Hugh Gloster(1967-1989). The bulk of the materials are administrative records from Dr. John Hope, Samuel Archer, and Charles Hubert, with the least from Benjamin E. Mays and Hugh Gloster. Records include correspondence; college events, such as commencement, Founders Day, and Class Day; faculty correspondence, class scheduling, buildings and grounds, college budgets, athletics, student organizations and activities, pictures, journals, advertisements, and student correspondence.


  • Creation: 1890-1967


Rights statement

All materials in this collection are either protected by copyright and/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 / Historical

Dr. John Hope served as Morehouse College's fourth president, and Atlanta University’s fifth president from 1929 until his death in 1936. Hope was born in Augusta, Georgia, in 1868. Hope received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Brown University in 1894, and shortly thereafter returned to his home state to teach at Atlanta Baptist College (now Morehouse College) in 1898. He was elected president in 1906, thereby becoming the first African American to serve in that capacity for Atlanta Baptist College. He served as president of the college until July 1931, while simultaneously serving as the first African-American president of Atlanta University. During his tenure as president, Dr. Hope launched the University’s graduate school, he entered into a joint venture with Morehouse College and Spelman College to hold a Summer School, and he started a laboratory school that offered training to students in the Department of Education. In addition, the School of Fine Arts was established, and a new library and athletic field were built during his administration. President Hope was instrumental in persuading the Public Works Administration to initiate a slum clearance program in Atlanta. In 1934, more than $2,000,000 was allocated to buy land and construct the first public housing development in the United States.

Dr. Samuel Archer served as the fifth president of Morehouse College from 1931-1937. Archer was born in Petersburg, Virginia in 1870. Archer received his Bachelor of Arts from Colgate University in 1902, where he was the first African American to play on the Colgate Raiders football team. Archer began teaching mathematics at Morehouse College in 1905, was the football coach until 1908, and again from 1912-1915. Due to World War I, Archer served as acting president in the absence of president Dr. John Hope. In 1920, Archer became the Dean of the College, and in 1931, the president of Morehouse College. Over thirty years, Archer also served as the Morehouse College Summer School Director and witnessed the college’s challenges during the War and a financial depression. Charles Dubois Hubert served a term as acting president from 1937-1940. Hubert was born in Hancock County, Georgia 1880. A graduate of Morehouse Academy in 1905, he went on to receive his bachelor of Arts. from Morehouse College in 1909. In 1912 he earned a Bachelor of Divinity from Rochester Theological Seminary, and in 1923 a Doctor of Divinity was conferred by Morehouse College. From 1932-1933 he continued graduate training at the University of Chicago.

In 1914, Hubert became the director of the School of Religion and served until his death. After the retirement of President Samuel Archer, Dr. Hubert became acting president and he served until the election of President Benjamin E. Mays.


17.50 Linear feet (The collection contains one box of additions, Box 42.)

Language of Materials




The Office of the President’s collection consists of six series: John Hope (1900-1937), Samuel Archer (1890-1937), Charles Hubert (1928-1940), Benjamin E. Mays (1956-1957), Hugh Gloster (1959-1977), and Reports (1936-1966). The bulk of the collection is of Hope, Archer, and Hubert. There are minimal records of Mays and Gloster. Each series may contain the subseries: administrative, Correspondence, General, Personal, and Student Affairs. All series are listed alphabetically, then chronologically. The administrative series contains correspondence pertaining to college administrative matters, Alumni, Board of Trustees, college statistics, finances, and prospective students. The Correspondence series contains letters and telegrams written by faculty, staff, parents, and. The General series contains letters received during the president's tenure but were not specific to the president's position. General materials include advertisements, invitations, brochures, and newspaper clippings. The Personal series contains personal documents, correspondence, pictures, and journals. The Student Affairs series contains correspondence from students, student accounts, and employment files.

Morehouse College Office of The Presidents, 1890-1967
Aletha Moore Carter
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Some French included in John Hopes' personal files.

Repository Details

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


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