From The Monumental Women Project Join us in honoring Dr. Georgiana Simpson (AB 1911 PhD 1921), one of the first African-American women to receive a PhD in the United States.
The Monumental Women Project is committed to honoring women in fields that have been historically dominated by men.
When Georgiana Simpson left her job as a high school teacher in Washington DC she left with a dream to expand her ability to teach students regardless of their race, class, or gender. She enrolled at the University of Chicago in 1907 and was immediately met with protest from white students who didn’t want an African-American living in the same dorm as them. Despite the attempts of the Dean of Women, Marion Talbot, to keep her in housing, President Harry Pratt Judson forced Simpson to leave campus.
Georgiana Simpson didn’t allow her age, race or gender dictate how far she would go in life.
She completed her bachelor's degree through correspondence and her voracious thirst for knowledge encouraged her to return to the University of Chicago to pursue a Ph.D.
At the age of 55, Dr. Georgiana Simpson became one of the first African-American women to obtain a Ph.D. in the United States.
After earning her historic degree, she went back to her hometown to teach at Dunbar High School, the first public high school for African-American students, and eventually Howard University. She was a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.
Together we can honor Dr. Simpson’s legacy as a lifelong scholar who shattered glass ceilings so that anyone can receive the education they want and deserve.
The support for this project has already begun. Previously, we won a $9,500.00 uncommon fund grant to build the bronze bust monument, but there’s much more work to be done.
We need to raise additional funds to complete the entirety of this project and to recognize Dr. Simpson for her trailblazing accomplishments.
With your support, when this complete monument is unveiled, it will be the first piece of public art in the City of Chicago that honors a woman for her own accomplishments.