Eastman School The Best Practical School in America Harlem 1905


Built by the Harlem Club in 1889, this is one of most spectacular Queen Anne structures in the city. The Harlem Club was founded by a group of social prominent Protestant men. The club’s failure to expand and admit Catholic and Jewish men (and their money) led to its insolvency by 1907.

The building was subsequently occupied by the Eastman School. Harvey G. Eastman (1832–78), a cousin of Kodak founder George Eastman, established the Eastman Business College in Poughkeapsie in 1859. Subsequent president Clement C. Gaines (1857–1943) opened a Harlem branch called the New York Business Institute at 81 E. 125th St. in 1892.

The 1898 catalog of the Eastman Business College and its affiliated school, the New York Business Institute, stated that:

“These schools do not receive students of the Negro Race”.

In 1905 S. V. Daniels, a 17-year-old from St. Thomas, withdrew from the main college following the petition of 160 southern students alleging that he was partially of African descent, and transferred to the Harlem branch.

Later known as the Eastman School, it became known as “The Best Practical School in America”, , the institution took over the former Harlem Club after 1907 and remained here until the school closed in 1931.

The college closed on June 10, 1931.

The card was cancelled view by Rotograph company (source).

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"The Clark Legacy Drs. Kenneth and Mamie Clark and their work," this post is made in partnership with Harlem Cultural Archives, get more at Harlem History.

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