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William B. Matthews Papers

Identifier: aarl89-011

Scope and Content Note

This collection is made up of a number of items pertaining to former educator William B. Matthews. Some of these are: personal papers, family letters, documents generated by the Knights of Pythias masonic lodge and correspondence received from Booker T. Washington. In addition, a 1922 annual from Central Colored High School and more than 70 photographs and - tintypes, which date back to the early 1900's, are included in the collection, as well.


  • 1899-1925


Restrictions on Use

There are no restrictions on research use of this collection.

Copyright Restrictions

Prior permission from the Research Library must be obtained in writing before any portion of this collection can be published or reproduced.

Historical Sketch

William B. Matthews was born in Atlanta during the mid-1800's. In 1896, he married Josephine Ophelia Beale, who at the time, was an accomplished teacher. They later had a daughter, Florida Louise.

Matthews' career began at the Houston Street School in Atlanta, where he served as Principal for 20 years. In 1910, he became State Agent for the North Carolina Insurance Company and two years later, became Principal with Central Colored High School in Louisville, KY. While there, he administered a faculty of 33 teachers and more than 900 students.

In addition, Matthews was a member of the First Congregational Church in Atlanta, Grand Auditor for the Knights of Pythias masonic lodge, a trustee with Atlanta University and Proprietor of the Negro Business Directory and Advertising Agency.


1.5 Linear feet




The collection consists of the papers of William B. Matthews from 1899-1925. Includes primarily correspondence, printed materials, ephemera, and photographs. The papers document Matthew's career in education; his involvement in the National Negro Business League, the Knights of Pythias, the First Congregational Church (Atlanta, Ga.), and Atlanta University. The collection also includes over 70 photographs and tintypes dating from the turn of the century.

Arrangement note

Arranged by record type.
Inventory of the William B. Matthews Papers aarl89-011 aarl89-011
Finding aid prepared by Finding aid prepared by Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History
2004 September 15
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Auburn Avenue Research Library on African-American Culture and History Repository

101 Auburn Avenue NE
Atlanta GA 30303