African-American educator Fannie Cobb Carter died on March 29, 1973, six months after her 100th birthday.
She was born in Charleston in 1872, just months before the state’s new constitution prohibited black children and white children from attending school together.
After earning a teaching degree from Storer College in Harpers Ferry, Cobb returned home to teach in Kanawha County’s public schools. In 1908, she organized the teacher-training department at West Virginia Colored Institute, which is now West Virginia State University.
After the death of her husband, Emory Carter, she was named superintendent of the State Industrial Home for Colored Girls in Huntington. Carter refused to accept the job until state officials removed the bars from the home’s windows.
She became director of adult education for Kanawha County schools in 1935 and retired two years later. But her career was far from over. In 1945, Carter became dean of women at the National Trade and Professional School for Women and Girls in Washington. At age 89, she served as the school’s acting president.
In 1962, Fannie Cobb Carter returned to Charleston, where she lived until her death.