Dec. 23, 1870 Chesterfield Chesterfield County Virginia, USA
Jan. 15, 1941 Atlanta Fulton County Georgia, USA
Dr Archer served as the 5th President of Morehouse College (1931-1937)
Dr. Samuel Howard Archer, Sr. was born to Nelson and Keziah (Howe) Archer on December 23, 1870, in Chesterfield, Va., and died on January 15, 1941 in Atlanta, Ga. after a short illness.
Archer, who became fondly known as "Big Boy", received his early childhood education at the Peabody Public School in Petersburg, Va. and continued on to the Wayland Normal School. Archer began his college education at Colgate University in 1898 and gained a reputation as a Scholar, Orator, and Athlete. While at the Baptist Institution, Archer studied Logic, Ethics, the Teachings of Jesus Christ, the New Testaments and Church History. He received his Bachelor's Degree in 1902. On September 7, 1905, Archer married Annie Courtney Johnson and to that union came four children: Samuel Howard Jr., Rosalind E., Nelson T., and Leonard C. Archer. He began his professional career in 1887 as a teacher in the rural schools of Virginia. In 1906, he went on to become a Professor of mathematics at Morehouse College, an institution for Negro men. He also served in the capacity of Football Coach, Dean and Vice President. On July 1, 1931, The American Baptist Home Mission Society announced that Samuel Howard Archer was elected President of Morehouse College. At this point Dr. Archer had already served at Morehouse for twenty-six years, during Dr. Hope's administration and the last year of Dr. George Sales' administration. During his thirty six (36) year tenure at Morehouse, Archer gained the reputation of being one of the greatest educators of all time. Marc Moreland in his article "Samuel Howard Archer: Portrait of a Teacher" Phylon, (1949) says "Dr Archer had a rare talent for handling young men. Of impressive appearance and of a wit as sharp as the fine edge of a seldom pleasure, he was, to his boys, as much man as any of them and a scholar who could at once amuse and instruct. Here indeed was a teacher who won young men and influenced them for good."
Published by Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History