July 7, 1878
On July 7, 1878, Francis J. Grimke (photo shows him in 1902) was ordained as a Presbyterian minister. Born in 1850 as the son of a white plantation owner and a black slave, Grimke would graduated in 1870 from the first college for blacks in the United States — Lincoln University, founded by Presbyterian Rev. Dr. John Miller Dickey and his wife, Sarah Emlen Cresson. Grimke then studied at Princeton Theological Seminary, graduating in 1878. He was called to Washington's 15th Street Presbyterian Church, which he served for 50 years, except for a brief call to Jacksonville, Florida (1885 - 1889). An articulate opponent of racism — "Race prejudice can't be talked down, it must be lived down" — Rev. Grimke helped in the formation of the NAACP.