William Sanders and Cordelia Bierce Scarborough Family Papers

William and Sarah Scarborough were educators and writers in Greene County, Ohio, in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. William Scarborough migrated to Ohio from Georgia, graduating from Oberlin College in 1875. He spent a year at the Oberlin Theological Seminary before joining the classical department at Wilberforce University in Greene County. In 1878 he received a Master of Arts degree. Sarah Cordelia Bierce was an 1875 graduate of the State Normal School at Oswego, New York. She served as principal of the Normal Department of Wilberforce University from 1877-1887, and for the next twenty-seven years, as principal of the Combined Normal and Industrial Department at Wilberforce. William Scarborough moved up through the ranks of faculty and administration at Wilberforce, eventually becoming president of the University in 1908. During their career as educators, both wrote frequently, Sarah focusing on fiction for women’s and Christian magazines, and William on scholarly topics. William joined a variety of professional and race-related organizations, including the Afro-American State League and the American Negro Academy, while his wife pursued her family’s genealogy, collecting correspondence and documents for the Abbey and Bierce families. The collection consists of correspondence for the Abbey, Bierce and Scarborough families, genealogical materials, memorabilia, clippings, and articles written by Sarah Scarborough. This collection pertains primarily to the social life and conditions of a black family during the 19th and early 20th centuries. There is also a small amount of material pertaining to William Scarborough’s attempts for governmental appointments in the 1890s and 1920s.