Pfeiffer University Seal Mary Fisher Floyd Archives & Special Collections
"I love to think of those who have preceeded us, who paved the way for us, and who challenged us." -- Mary Fisher Floyd

Oberlin Home and School Collection Online Finding Aid
Oberlin Home and School Photograph Collection
Oberlin Home and School, circa 1885
Oberlin Home and School, circa 1885.

A Brief History of Oberlin Home and School

Pfeiffer University originated from one of at least fifteen home schools founded by Miss Emily C. Prudden between circa 1885 and 1909. Pfeiffer developed from the Oberlin Home and School, reportedly named in memory of John Oberlin, whose service as a minister and social pioneer in the rural valleys of Alsace, France, inspired Miss Prudden's own interests. The Oberlin Home and School began at Lick Mountain, near Hudson in Caldwell County, North Carolina. In 1903 the Woman's Home Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church agreed to assume responsibility for the Oberlin property. Following the transfer of 37 acres and two buildings on June 8, 1903, the Oberlin School was renamed the Ebenezer Mitchell Home and School in memory of the stepson of Mrs. Mary A. Mitchell of Dayton, Ohio, whose generosity facilitated completion of improvements to the property. A fire on January 14, 1908 led to a relocation of Mitchell Home and School. The structure which housed faculty and students was destroyed and the school moved to temporary quarters in nearby Lenoir. These quarters, however, soon proved inadequate. The Mitchell Home and School then moved to Misenheimer in Stanly County, North Carolina, in February of 1910, with the acquisition of the property on with Pfeiffer University now resides. (borrowed heavily from History of Pfeiffer found in the college catalog)

Elizabeth J. Kennedy teacher at Oberlin Home and School, circa 1900. Students and teachers at Oberlin Home and School , circa 1900. On back: Oberlin Home and School, forerunner of Pheifer [sic] College [students in lower grades?]
circa 1900s Miss Emily Prudden - Founder of Oberlin Home and School, precursor of Pfeiffer University, circa 1900s
Former students of Oberlin Home and School with portrait of Miss Emily Prudden, 1963

"The Oberlin Home and School Photograph Collection is supported with federal Library Service and Technology Act (LSTA) funds made possible through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources through the North Carolina ECHO, 'Exploring Cultural Heritage Online' Digitization Grant Program."

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