|Articles, Biography, History, Media Archive, Passing, Religion, Slavery, United States on 2016-01-31 02:45Z by Steven|
Georgetown University, Washington, D.C.
Every day thousands of students pass by Healy Hall and marvel at its towering steeples and complex intricacies. Few of them realize that the man responsible for this Georgetown trademark was every bit as complex and dynamic as the building bearing his name today.
As the first black president of a predominantly white university, Fr. Patrick Healy, S.J., revolutionized Georgetown and helped build firm foundations for a young university.
Yet Healy’s trek to greatness began not in the hallowed halls of academia, but on the Georgia cotton plantation where he was born on Feb. 27, 1834. The son of an Irish Catholic and a biracial domestic slave, Healy had great obstacles to overcome. Healy’s father Michael immigrated to the United States from Ireland through Canada around 1815. Experiencing great success in a series of land lotteries, he moved to Macon, Ga., where he built his own cotton plantation with the help of 49 slaves. Michael Healy became relatively prosperous and became a prominent businessman in the Macon community…
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