A.B., Institute for Colored Youth, 1867; summer school, U. Pennsylvania, 1908.
Teacher, Latin, German and Spanish, Institute for Colored Youth (ICY), 1867-1875; Principal of the Girls High School, 1876-c.1902
"Die Beiden Piccolomini,” African Methodist Episcopal Church Review 1(Jan., 1885), pp. 200-204; “Tacitus’ German Women,” African Methodist Episcopal Church Review 2(Oct., 1885), pp. 167-73; “Milton’s Satan,” African Methodist Episcopal Church Review 7(Oct., 1885), pp. 196-198; “The Sixteenth Century in the Education of Modern Thought,” African Methodist Episcopal Church Review 19(July, 1903), pp. 31-40.
Little is known about Campbell. In the early 1860s she attended the Institute for Colored Youth (ICY) in Philadelphia, which had been founded by the Society of Friends in 1839 and maintained a classical curriculum. On the teaching staff at the time was Fannie Jackson-Coppin (1837-1913), who had been recruited by the ICY from her alma mater, Oberlin College, class of 1865, to teach Greek, Latin and mathematics at the Institute. Coppin, the school’s principal from 1869-1902, was in all probability one of Campbell’s teachers. Campbell is listed on the school’s 1865 commencement program giving a paper titled, “The Worth of Books,” and again in 1866 giving “Sic Itur ad Astra.” In December, 1868, she presented her essay, “Virgil and Gray” at the winter commencement.
After graduation in 1867, Miss Campbell joined ICY’s faculty and began to teach Latin, German, and Spanish. In 1876 she became head of the female department. When the ICY moved out of the city in 1902, and changed its name to Cheney Institute along with its curriculum from college preparatory training to manual arts, Campbell left. She move to Columbia, SC to teach at Allen University, a school founded by the African Methodist Episcopal Church which rigorously supported education for people of African descent. Miss Campbell’s name remained on Allen’s staff’s roster as an instructor of Latin, German and Spanish until 1912 after which her name disappeared.
One of the essays she published in the African Methodist Episcopal Review, the leading nineteenth century literary and intellectual journal for black Americans, concerned Tacitus’s conception of German women. Campbell disagreed with Mrs. Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815-1902), the famous champion of women’s rights, who linked the “present improved condition” of modern women to the “exalted sentiment for women which prevailed among the Germans during Tacitus’ times.” At some point Campbell returned to Philadelphia, and in October of 1930 died at her home on 621 N. Fifty-Seventh Street. Her body was buried in a family plot in Eden Cemetery, a burial ground in Delaware County, PA, chartered by and for blacks in 1902.
“Pencil Pusher Points,” Philadelphia Tribune (10 Feb. 1912) 4; “Pioneer of City Succumbs at Her Home…Great Educator,” Philadelphia Tribune (13 Nov. 1930) 2; "Miss Frazelia Campbell," Afro-American (15 November 1930) 18.
Image credit: Fanny Jackson Coppin, Reminiscences of School Life (Philadelphia, 1913) after p. 145.
AUTHORMichele Valerie Ronnick