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Encyclopedia > Bishop College

Bishop College was a historically black college located first in Marshall, Texas and later Dallas, Texas.


The college was founded by the Baptist Home Mission Society in 1881 as the result of a movement to build a college for African-American Baptists. The movement was started by Nathan Bishop, who had been the superintendent of several major school systems in New England. A committee of Baptist ministers from East Texas selected a location in Marshall, Texas on land belonging to the Holcomb Plantation, Wylucing.


In the early 20th century under the leadership of the college's first African-American college president, Joseph J. Rhoads, Bishop phased out its high school programs and placed emphasis on its new two year ministerial program. During the 1930s and 1940s the program evolved into the Lacy Kirk Williams Institute. The institute attracted national attention and its attendants included the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rev. Jesse Jackson.


After receiving a grant from the Hoblitzelle Foundation, Bishop moved to Dallas in 1961. Bishop closed in 1988 after a financial scandal, that eventually lead to the college having its accreditation and eligibility to receive funds from charities such as the United Negro College Fund revoked. In 1990 the property was purchased by Comer S. Cottrell, and Paul Quinn College was moved to the Bishop campus.






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