Bookkeeper, writer and educator: introducing Lucretia Newman Coleman

Lucretia Newman Coleman was an African-American writer, educator, secretary and bookkeeper. In 1883, Coleman became the assistant secretary and bookkeeper for the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church. She also published her first literary piece in 1883, a poem entitled ‘Lucille of Montana’.

Lucretia is known for being one of the first African-American students to attend Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin. Records show that Coleman enrolled as a freshman in September 1872 on the Scientific Course.

Coleman is remembered for her contributions to early Black journals. Her novel, Poor Ben: A Story of Real Life (1890) was critically acclaimed by her contemporaries and in 1894, she served as a vice president of the Coloured Authors' Association.

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This is part of our year-long #ICB100Women Campaign honouring 100 influential and inspiring women bookkeepers, to celebrate the suffrage centenary.