Ernest Lyon

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Ernest Lyon and his son in Monrovia, Liberia, circa 1905

Ernest Lyon (1860–1938) was an African-American minister, educator and diplomat.


While there are few accounts that Lyon was born in Honduras, most sources have him being born in Belize City, British Honduras. Lyon immigrated to the United States in the 1870s. He received an A.B. degree from New Orleans University and became a Methodist Episcopal in Baltimore, Maryland. In 1901, he became professor of church history at Morgan College and was among the founders of Maryland Industrial and Agricultural Institute, a school for African-American youth. The civil rights leader Booker T. Washington recommended Lyon to President Theodore Roosevelt, who appointed him U.S. Minister and Consul General to Liberia in 1903. He served in this capacity until 1910. Following his diplomatic service, he returned to Baltimore to become the minister of Ames Methodist Episcopal Church.


  • William Davis Godman, A. H. Dexter Godman, Ines A. Godman. 1893. Gilbert Academy and Agricultural College, Winsted, Louisiana: Sketches and Incidents.
  • William Edward Burghardt Du Bois. 1917. The Crisis, Volumes 15–18 (p. 29).
  • Sir Harry Hamilton Johnston. 1910. The Negro in the New World.
  • John William Leonard, Albert Nelson Marquis (eds). Who's Who in America, Volume 4.
  • The Journal of Negro History.