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CHARLES WESLEY BOYD


Prof. Charles Wesley Boyd, Supervisor of Colored Schools of Charleston, is well known through the service he has rendered in both educational and religious fields. In both realms his work has been constructive and progressive. He is a native of Kentucky, having been born at Mr. Sterling, Ky., on August 19, 1865, and was the oldest of a large family of children. His father, John Boyd, though without learning was a pious man and a deacon in the Baptist church and encouraged his son to strive for an education. He was the son of Peter Boyd. Prof. Boyd's mother, before her marriage, was Ella Steele, a daughter of Stella Steele.

Young Boyd laid the foundation of his education in the public schools of Ohio. He pursued his normal course at Wilberforce University, Xenia, Ohio, finishing there in 1891. Since that time he has kept up with the advances made by his profession through special courses at Ohio University, Columbia University, and the University of Chicago. In recognition of his work and attainments, his alma mater conferred on him the M.A. degree.

All his teaching work has been done in West Virginia, with the educational life of which he has been identified for thirty years. His first school was at Clarksburg, where he remained a little more than a year when he resigned to accept a position in the schools of Charleston. He began in the first grade and grew up with the city and the system. More than that, he has done more than any other man to make it what it is. When he began teaching at Charleston the teaching force of the colored schools numbered six, with an enrollment of less than 250. Now (1921) there are forty teachers and an enrollment of 943. At the same time the curriculum has been revised so as to conform to standard graded and high school work. He organized the high school and was its principal four years till made supervisor. He is a member of the State Teacher's Association which he has served as President.

On November 9, 1891, Prof. Boyd was married to Miss Kate Jarrison of Ohio. They have five children, John Kanawha (Mrs. Butler), Nakomis (Mrs. Shelton), Czar Hyte, and Rheba Boyd.

Early in life he identified himself with the Baptist church and since residing in Charleston has been a member of the First Baptist Church in which he is Director of Religious Education, a position he has held for eighteen years. In this field he has done notable work. He has modernized his own school, bring it up to the rank of the "Standard Sunday School," being the first colored Sunday School in the State to reach that rank.

He is recognized as a competent Bible teacher and has specialized in S. S. organization. Consequently he is much in demand for institute and convention work to which he gives himself as freely as his other duties will permit. He is Treasurer of the State Sunday School Convention.

In politics he is a Republican and among the secret orders is identified with the Pythians, being Secretary of his local lodge and Grand Keeper of Records and Seals of the W. Virginia Grand Lodge.

He and his associates are working out in Charleston an interesting experiment in cooperative merchandising. He has studied conditions and is of the opinion that the next great forward step of the race should be along the line of business development.


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