Dr. James T. Thomas, briefly of Wilson.

Screen Shot 2020-08-09 at 11.52.35 AM.png

Madison (Ind.) Daily Herald, 12 August 1922.


In the 1900 census of Winston, Forsyth County, North Carolina: tobacco roller William Taylor, 31; wife Mary, 27; and children Anna, 8, James T., 6, Geneva, 4, and Charles, 1.

James T. Taylor registered for the World War I draft in Wilson County in 1917. Per his draft card, he was born 27 December 1893 in Danville, Virginia; lived at 653 [later 706] East Green Street, Wilson; and worked as a bellhop at Yarmouth Hotel, Atlantic City, New Jersey (“student” crossed through). [Taylor was a college student at the time. Why was he living in Wilson with the family of John W. and Edmonia Barnes Farmer?]

On 12 August 1922, James T. Taylor, born 27 December 1893 in Danville, Virginia, to William T. Taylor and Mary Thompson, and a resident of Wilson, N.C., married Gertrude E. Tandy, born 15 January 1898 in Bedford, Kentucky, to George Tandy and Josephine Stafford, in Madison, Indiana.

In 1926 James Taylor took a position as professor of psychology at North Carolina College (now North Carolina Central University) and later Dean of Men and Athletic Director and then Director of the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. Circa 1930, the Taylors bought a house at 2106 Fayetteville Street.

College Heights Historic District, National Register of Historic Places Registration Form.

In the 1930 census of Durham, Durham County, North Carolina: college teacher James Taylor, 36, and wife Gertrude, 32, school supervisor.

In the 1940 census of Durham, Durham County, North Carolina: James T. Taylor, 45, born in Virginia, college teacher; wife Gertrude E., 40, born in Indiana, public school supervisor; and nephew James B. Clarke, 19.

Gertrude Elinor Taylor died 24 January 1954 in Durham, North Carolina. Per her death certificate, she was born 15 January 1900 in Marion, Indiana, to George Tandy and Josephine Stafford; was married; and was a school teacher. Prof. James T. Taylor, 2106 Fayetteville Street, was informant.

The Eagle (1954), the yearbook of North Carolina College [now North Carolina Central University.]

On 30 June 1955, James T. Taylor, 57, of Durham, son of William T. and Mary T. Taylor, married Galatia Elizabeth Lynch, 41, of High Point, N.C., daughter of James C. Cunningham and Lillie B. Cunningham, in High Point, Guilford County, North Carolina.

N.C.C.U.’s James T. Taylor Education Building, constructed in 1955.

In November 1968, North Carolina Governor Dan Moore named James T. Taylor as chairman of the state’s Good Neighbor Council, “the official state agency for moderating racial troubles.” Per a 14 November 1960 article in the News and Observer, Taylor retired from N.C.C.U. in 1959 and was a past president of N.C. Teachers Association (where he led a fight for equal pay for African-American teachers) and an organizer of the Durham Committee on Negro Affairs.

James Thomas Taylor died 29 March 1970 in Durham, North Carolina. Per his death certificate, he was born 27 December 1893 in Danville, Virginia, to William Thomas Taylor and Mary Brown; was a widower; and was a retired professor at N.C. Central University. Mrs. Irma Lash of Brooklyn, N.Y., was informant.

The Women Who Ran the Schools: The Jeanes Teachers and Durham County’s Rural Black Schools, http://www.durhamcountylibrary.org

News and Observer, 30 March 1970.

Leave a Reply