Sarah Ann Dickey

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Sarah A. Dickey
Sarah A. Dickey.jpg
Born Sarah A. Dickey
(1838-04-25)April 25, 1838
Ohio, U.S.
Died January 23, 1904(1904-01-23)
Clinton, Mississippi, U.S.
Occupation Educator
Language English
Nationality American
Alma mater Mount Holyoke College

Sarah Ann Dickey (April 25, 1838 – January 23, 1904) was an ordained minister who founded the historically black institution of higher education for women in Clinton, Mississippi, Mount Hermon Female Seminary (now Sumner Hill Junior High School) in 1875. She devoted her life to the development of educational opportunities for African-Americans.


Dickey was born near Dayton, Ohio. Although her education only began at the age of sixteen, she received a teacher's certificate only three years later. During the Civil War she traveled to Vicksburg, Mississippi, to teach recently freed former slaves. After the American Civil War, she attended Mount Holyoke Female Seminary (now Mount Holyoke College), graduating in 1869.


She returned to Mississippi to continue working with African-Americans recently freed from slavery. She organized and established the Mount Hermon Female Seminary, which opened in October 1875 in Clinton, Mississippi.[1] The Seminary was modeled after Mount Holyoke, offering education for women, and preparing them for roles primarily as teachers.

The Seminary was eventually closed in 1924 by the American Missionary Association, which had its own college in Tougaloo, Mississippi. The site of the seminary in Clinton, Mississippi, is now Sumner Hill Junior High.[2] An historical marker honoring Dickey was placed there on 29 April 2016.[3]

Dickey was ordained a minister in her church, the United Brethren Church, in 1896.

Dickey never married but raised several children left in her care.


  1. ^ "Welcome to Encyclopædia Britannica's Guide to Black History". Retrieved 2016-04-30. 
  2. ^ "Historical Marker Dedicated to Sarah Dickey". Retrieved 2016-04-30. 
  3. ^ "Historical Marker Dedicated to Sarah Dickey". Retrieved 2016-04-30. 


Griffith, Helen (1965). Dauntless in Mississippi: The Life of Sarah A. Dickey. South Hadley, Massachusetts: Dinosaur Press. 

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