Lincoln Institute Oral History Collection 2003-2008

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This collection consists of thirty-nine videocassettes of interviews with eighty-six individuals who were students at Lincoln Institute at various times ranging from the 1930s through 1966 when the school closed. The interviews were recorded by Berea College Associate Professor of African and African-American Studies, Andrew Baskin with the assistance of Symerdar Baskin.Lincoln Institute was an all-black boarding high school in Simpsonville, Kentucky, near Louisville, that operated from 1912 to 1966.The school was created by the trustees of Berea College after the Day Law passed the Kentucky Legislature in 1904 which put an end to the racially integrated education at Berea that had lasted since the end of the Civil War. The founders originally intended Lincoln to be a college as well as a high school, but by the 1930s it gave up its junior college function. Lincoln offered both vocational education and standard high school classes. The students produced the schools food on the campus 444 acres. Lincoln alumnus, Whitney Young, Jr., became a prominent leader of the Civil Rights Movement and served as director of the National Urban League from 1961 to 1971. Born at Lincoln in 1921, he was the son of Whitney Young, Sr. who led the school as its longtime principal. The rise of integrated education reduced the need for high schools like Lincolns. Since its 1966 closing, the Lincoln campus has housed gifted and talented programs, the Whitney Young, Jr. Job Corps Center, and the Whitney Young Birthplace and Museum, a National Historic Landmark.