Lincoln University (Missouri)

Lincoln University
Former name
Lincoln Institute (1866-1921)
Motto Laborare et studere
Motto in English
To labor and study
Type Land-grant, HBCU
Established January 14, 1866 (1866-01-14)[1]
President Kevin D. Rome[2]
Provost Said L. Sewell[3]
Students 3,043 (Fall 2014)[4]
Location Jefferson City, Missouri, U.S.
38°33′54″N 92°10′10″W / 38.565070°N 92.169470°W / 38.565070; -92.169470Coordinates: 38°33′54″N 92°10′10″W / 38.565070°N 92.169470°W / 38.565070; -92.169470
Campus 167 acres (67.6 ha)
(Main campus),
374.68 acres (151.628 ha) (University Farms)
Colors Navy blue and White
Nickname Blue Tigers
Mascot Stripes
Sporting affiliations
GLVC (Football only)

Lincoln University is a historically black public land-grant university and located in Jefferson City, Missouri. In 2007, it was ranked #3 for economic diversity, #5 for campus ethnic diversity, and #9 for most international students according to U.S. News & World Report rankings of master's-level universities in the Midwest. Founded in 1866 by African-American veterans of the American Civil War, it is a member-school of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund.


Lincoln University Hilltop Campus Historic District
Location 820 Chestnut St., Jefferson City, Missouri
Area 9.6 acres (3.9 ha)
Built 1923
Architectural style Colonial Revival
NRHP Reference # 83000978[5]
Added to NRHP April 28, 1983

During the Civil War, the 62nd Colored Infantry regiment of the U.S. Army, largely recruited in Missouri, set up educational program for its soldiers. At the end of the war it raised $6300 To set up a black school, to be headed by a white abolitionist officer, Richard Foster (1826 – 1901). Foster opened Lincoln Institute in Jefferson City in 1866. Lincoln had a black student body, both black and white teachers, and outside support from religious groups. The state government was supportive and provided $5000 a year to train teachers for the state's new black school system.[6] Under the Morrill Act of 1890, Missouri designated the school as a land-grant university, emphasizing agriculture, mechanics and teaching.

By 1921, the college had expanded to offer graduate programs and was officially designated a university by the state of Missouri. It changed its name to "Lincoln University of Missouri." In 1954, it opened its doors to applicants of all races. It provides both undergraduate and graduate courses.


Main article: Lincoln Blue Tigers

Lincoln University participates at the NCAA Division II level in Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA). Lincoln competed in the MIAA from 1970 to 1999 when it left because it did not have a football team since 1989. The university competed in the Heartland Conference from 1999–2010, of which, Lincoln is a founding conference member. The school revitalized its football program and reentered the MIAA in 2010.[7] The Lincoln University Women's Track Team has made NCAA Division II history by winning the Outdoor Track and Field Championships five consecutive times.[8]
The school has programs in the following sports:

Alma Mater "Lincoln, O, Lincoln"

Sung to the tune of "Ach wie ist's möglich dann," an old German folk song published in 1827 and variously credited to Georg Heinrich or Friedrich Silcher Kuchen. (The West Point and Wake Forest alma mater songs use the same melody.)[9]

Student activities

Founder's Day, traditionally held on the first Saturday of February, pays tribute to the founders of Lincoln University. Homecoming, usually held in October, is a celebratory time where family and friends of Lincoln University convene to participate in gala activities. Springfest, usually held in late April, is a time to celebrate the arrival of spring with games and other activities throughout the week.

Marching Musical Storm

The "Marching Musical Storm" is the university's marching band. The band was founded in 1948 and is one of the largest student organizations on campus. The band performs at all home football games, select basketball games, and several other school sanctioned functions throughout the year.[10]

Student media

Fraternities & sororities

The National Pan-Hellenic Council organizations that currently have chapters at Lincoln University of Missouri are:

Organization Symbol Chapter Chapter Symbol
Alpha Kappa Alpha ΑΚΑ Alpha Iota AI
Alpha Phi Alpha ΑΦΑ Alpha Psi
Delta Sigma Theta ΔΣΘ Alpha Theta
Iota Phi Theta ΙΦΘ Zeta Xi
Omega Psi Phi ΩΨΦ Eta Sigma
Phi Beta Sigma ΦΒΣ Beta Chi BX
Sigma Gamma Rho ΣΓΡ Alpha Mu AM
Zeta Phi Beta ΖΦΒ Xi Beta ΞΒ
Kappa Alpha Psi ΚΑΨ Alpha Mu AM

Notable faculty and staff

Name Department Notability Reference
Althea Gibson black tennis pioneer, Wimbledon, French Open, and US Open champion who was an athletics instructor in the early 1950s
Lorenzo Greene black historian who taught at the university (1933-1972)
Robert Nathaniel Dett composer
Oliver Cromwell Cox a member of the Chicago School of Sociology and early world-systems theorist who taught at Lincoln (1949-1970) [11]
Inman E. Page President President of school from 1880-1898 and again in 1922-1923

Notable alumni

Name Class year Notability Reference(s)
Rita Heard Days Member of both houses of the Missouri State Legislature
Dr. James Frank 1953 First alumnus to be president of Lincoln University, where he served from 1973 to 1983. He was the first African-American to serve in the National Office of the NCAA [12]
Lloyd L. Gaines Disappeared mysteriously after fighting for the right to equal education
George Howard, Jr. First African-American federal judge in Arkansas
Leo Lewis Member of the Canadian Football Hall of Fame
Carey Means Voice of Frylock on Aqua Teen Hunger Force
Zeke Moore Former NFL defensive back
Oliver Lake Jazz musician
Julius Hemphill Jazz musician
Lemar Parrish Former eight-time pro bowl National Football League (NFL) defensive back in the 1970s and early 1980s, and former head coach of the Blue Tiger football team from 2004 to 2009
Captain Wendell O. Pruitt, U.S. Army Air Force Captain Pruit was a fighter pilot with the famed 332nd Fighter Group (the Tuskegee Airmen) during World War II. Captain Pruitt was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for his attack on, and destruction of, a warship in Trieste harbor, in northern Italy.
Romona Robinson Award-winning Cleveland television news anchor [13]
Joe Torry Actor and comedian
Ronald Townson American vocalist. He was an original member of The 5th Dimension, a popular vocal group of the late 1960s and early 1970s.
Maida Coleman Senate Minority leader in Missouri
Blaine Luetkemeyer U.S. Congressman
William Tecumseh Vernon Minister and bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, and a former president of Western University (now defunct) in Kansas, the first historically black college established west of the Mississippi.
Joshua Peters 2009 One of the youngest members of the Missouri State House of Representatives, and a former SGA president

See also


  1. "Find LU Facts Quick - Lincoln University". Retrieved 2016-09-10.
  2. "Welcome - Lincoln University".
  3. Provost
  4. "Lincoln University".
  5. National Park Service (2010-07-09). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
  6. Lawrence O. Christensen et al. eds. (1999). Dictionary of Missouri Biography. U of Missouri Press. p. 312.
  7. Lincoln returns to MIAA - St. Joseph News-Press - February 2, 2009
  8. "Lincoln University of Missouri Blue Tigers - Lincoln University Track & Field to be Inducted Into the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame". Lincoln University.
  9. Lincoln University Songs
  10. "Events - Marching Musical Storm - Lincoln University". Retrieved 2016-09-10.
  11. Sean P. Hier, "The forgotten architect: Cox, Wallerstein, and world-system theory," Race & Class Vol. 42(3): 69-86
  12. "Dr. James Frank To Receive 2001 Distinguished American Award". National Football Foundation. Retrieved January 15, 2013.
  13. "Romona Robinson". WOIO. 3 February 2012. Retrieved 13 January 2016.
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