Myrtilla Miner: Celebrating a Legacy of Excellence in Education

The 38th Annual Founders’ Day observance at UDC commemorates the 200th birthday of the University’s abolitionist founder, Myrtilla Miner, who established the Miner School for Colored Girls in 1851.

Myrtilla Miner was a pioneering proponent of the concept that “no child be left behind” in providing a quality education for all children in the District of Columbia regardless of race, creed or class. Considered by some to be the “mother” of public education in the nation’s capital, she fought against the odds to ensure learning opportunities for African-American girls and earned Congressional support for her groundbreaking institution. Miner’s efforts to privately educate minority youth and the resulting backlash from the broader community were the catalyst for increased support of public education for all children in the nation’s capital and ultimately to the establishment of the public university and urban land-grant institution is UDC today.

There are several articles, written narratives, and one book on the internet that chronicles Miss Miner’s life and contributions.  One such article was written by Denise Oliver Velez, and provides an outstanding summary of the bicentennial legacy that we celebrate this month.

Learn more about Myrtilla Miner.

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