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The founding of LeMoyne-Owen College (LOC) in 1862 is marked on this date. This school in Memphis, TN., is one of over 100 Historical Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in America.
LeMoyne-Owen College began before the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. Lucinda Humphrey, a hospital nurse at Camp Shiloh, first held candlelight instructions for groups of Blacks to teach them the alphabet. In 1863, the school was moved to Memphis and, in 1866, became Lincoln School. Later, Dr. Francis Julian LeMoyne of the American Missionary Association and a prominent physician gave money to the school. For this, it was renamed in his honor as the LeMoyne Normal and Commercial School.
It got its present site in Memphis in 1914 and was chartered by the State of Tennessee as a four-year degree-granting institution in 1934. Another school, Owen College, was founded by the Tennessee Baptist Missionary and Educational Convention and opened in 1954. It was named in honor of the Reverend S.A. Owen, a prominent religious and civic leader.
In the fall of 1968, the two colleges merged, forming LeMoyne-Owen College (LOC). Its campus is in South Memphis, with a diverse, multi-ethnic student body from the United States and several foreign countries.