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Roland C. McConnell

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Information about Roland C. McConnell

Profile image of Roland C. McConnell

Profession

Category:
EducationMakers
Occupation(s):
Historian

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Black, Red
Favorite Food:
Chicken
Favorite Time of Year:
Christmas
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Caribbean
Favorite Quote:
Okie Dokie.

Birthplace

Born:
3/10/1910
Birth Location:
Amherst,

Profession

Category:
EducationMakers
Occupation(s):
Historian

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Black, Red
Favorite Food:
Chicken
Favorite Time of Year:
Christmas
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Caribbean
Favorite Quote:
Okie Dokie.

Birthplace

Born:
3/10/1910
Birth Location:
Amherst
See how Roland C. McConnell is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Professor of history and author Roland C. McConnell was born in Amherst, Nova Scotia, Canada on March 10, 1910. His parents, A.M.E. Reverend Thomas Benjamin McConnell of Kingstree, South Carolina, and Helen Viola Halfkenny McConnell met in Canada. McConnell attended Riverside School in Elkin, West Virginia and Garnet-Patterson Middle School in Washington. McConnell graduated from Dunbar High School in 1927, where he was a classmate of historian Sadie I. Daniels and Dr. Robert C. Weaver. McConnell earned his A.B. degree in 1931 and his M.A.. degree in 1933 from Howard University, where Charles Wesley introduced him to Carter G. Woodson, founder of the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (now ASALH).

After graduating, McConnell taught at Elizabeth State Teachers College before joining the United States Army in 1942. In 1943, McConnell served as visiting lecturer at Howard University and archivist at the National Archives. Under the tutelage of Dr. Ralph Betts Flanders, McConnell was awarded his Ph.D. from New York University in 1945.

Arriving at Morgan State University in 1948, McConnell became chairman of the Division of Social Science from 1953 to 1955, chairman of the Department of History from 1967 to 1975 and Professor Emeritus in 1981 and Carter G. Woodson Scholar in Residence. McConnell taught history in a department with Dr. Benjamin Quarles and contributed articles to The Journal of Negro History, The North Carolina Historical Review, The Maryland Pendulum, and the Afro-American and Baltimore Sun newspapers. His book, Negro Troops of Antebellum Louisiana, A History of the Battalion of Men of Color is still widely referenced.

In addition to his writings and teaching, McConnell served as chair of the Maryland Commission on Afro-American History and Culture from 1972 to 1984 and was the recipient of the Meritorious Plaque from the State of Maryland and Morgan State University. He was presented with a trophy from ASALH’s Journal of Negro History and ASALH’s Mary McLeod Bethune Service Award. With his late wife, Catherine Taylor McConnell, he was guest editor for the spring and summer 1991 edition of the Journal of the Afro-American Genealogical Society. McConnell’s latest work is an illustrated history of his beloved Morgan Park neighborhood in Baltimore.

McConnell passed away on May 1, 2007 at the age of 97.

McConnell was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on June 10, 2004.

See how Roland C. McConnell is related to other HistoryMakers
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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Roland C. McConnell's interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Roland C. McConnell lists his favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Roland C. McConnell describes his maternal family background
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Roland C. McConnell talks about his mother and father
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Roland C. McConnell talks about his father and his family's migration from Canada to West Virginia to Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Roland C. McConnell recalls his earliest childhood memories
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Roland C. McConnell recalls the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Roland C. McConnell talks about his siblings
  • Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Roland C. McConnell recalls his childhood interest in history and receiving help in mathematics
  • Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Roland C. McConnell talks about the grade schools he attended and shares information about his first name
  • Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Roland C. McConnell remembers his favorite teachers in school
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Roland C. McConnell talks about his and his brother's names
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Roland C. McConnell recalls teachers and students from Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Roland C. McConnell recalls his time in high school and remembers a story about wearing long pants
  • Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Roland C. McConnell describes his mother's aspirations for her three sons
  • Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Roland C. McConnell describes his professors and meeting Carter G. Woodson at Howard University in Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Roland C. McConnell talks about his social life at Howard University in Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Roland C. McConnell says where he attended church
  • Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Roland C. McConnell talks about his graduate studies at Howard University in Washington, D.C.
  • Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Roland C. McConnell talks about earning his Ph.D., working for the National Archives, and his marriage
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Roland C. McConnell describes his time working at the National Archives while enlisted in the U.S. Army
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Roland C. McConnell talks about going to teach at Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland and remembers Benjamin Quarles
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Roland C. McConnell talks about earning his Ph.D. from New York University
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Roland C. McConnell talks about learning about the Murphy family, who founded the Afro American Newspapers
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Roland C. McConnell talks about deciding to teach at Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland and his colleagues there
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Roland C. McConnell talks about the Corps d'Afrique
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Roland C. McConnell talks about black soldiers in the Civil War
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Roland C. McConnell talks about black scout Isaiah Dorman
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Roland C. McConnell talks about historical studies he has written
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Roland C. McConnell explains why Reconstruction is one of his favorite historical periods
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Roland C. McConnell talks about his favorite historical figures
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Roland C. McConnell talks about the history of Morgan Park in Baltimore, Maryland, pt. 1
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Roland C. McConnell talks about the history of Morgan Park in Baltimore, Maryland, pt. 2
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Roland C. McConnell talks about the Murphy family's presence in Morgan Park in Baltimore, Maryland
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Roland C. McConnell talks about his pride in his students
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Roland C. McConnell describes his hopes for the African American community
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Roland C. McConnell reflects upon his legacy
  • Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Roland C. McConnell talks about the Maryland Commission for African American History and Culture
  • Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Roland C. McConnell reflects upon the areas of history he believes deserve greater attention
  • Tape: 4 Story: 11 - Roland C. McConnell lists the courses he taught at Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland
  • Tape: 4 Story: 12 - Roland C. McConnell describes how he would like to be remembered
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Roland C. McConnell narrates his photographs