Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts History

Sauer, Anne

Branco, Jessica

Bennett, John

Crowley, Zachary


Jackson, Cornelia Maria, 1822-1895


Cornelia Maria Jackson (1822-95) was an advocate of women's rights, a committed Universalist, and a benefactor of Tufts University. Her generous gift allowed for the establishment of the Cornelia M. Jackson College for Women in 1910.

The daughter of John and Nancy Fuller, Jackson was born in Wrentham, Massachusetts, on December 15, 1822. She attended Attleboro Academy and went on to Bridgewater State Normal School. After graduating in 1847, Jackson taught school in Wrentham, Mansfield, and Attleboro. Albert J. Metcalf, another prominent figure in the establishment and support of Tufts College was one of her pupils. In 1862, she married Sylvester R. Jackson, a Providence businessman. Jackson relocated to Rhode Island, where she resided for the rest of her life. Her only child, Mary, died suddenly in 1892, and her husband died the following year. She died in 1895, within two years of her husband's death.

Although not well-known outside of Providence, Jackson was a life-long believer in equal rights for women, enthusiastically advocating suffrage and access to higher education for women. Jackson was a member of the Church of the Mediator, a Universalist congregation located in Providence and led by Rev. Dr. Henry W. Rugg, a friend of hers for more than twenty-five years. The pastor was a member of the Tufts College Corporation, for which he served as secretary. He also had sat on the committee that voted to open Tufts doors to women students in 1892.

Jackson showed much interest in Tufts' move to coeducation and bequeathed the College $70,000 and half of the remainder of her estate to Tufts. As she states in her will, Jackson's gift was "In great thankfulness for the opportunity now opening before me, which realizes the dream of my youth, and which has grown to a hope with advancing years; that of helping to remove the disabilities of women..."The bequest was to be used for the establishment of a building to be designated as "The Cornelia M. Jackson College for Women" and for the provision of special instruction for women "in the duties and privileges of American citizenship, and in the theory and working of the United States government," for which a chair in Political Science was endowed in 1898.

Jackson did not, however, endorse the creation of a sexually segregated learning environment within her will. When the women were separated from the men's college in 1910, it was felt that the name "Jackson College" continued to be a fitting one and did not at all diminish the significance of Jackson's memorial offering.

Jackson College and the Cornelia M. Jackson Chair of Political Science were both named in her honor in gratitude for her generosity to Tufts.

Source: VF; LOH1, 183-85.

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Numeric Entries
Dame, Lorin Low, 1838-1903
Dana, Charles A., 1881-1975
Dana Laboratory, 1963
Daniel Ounjian Prize in Economics,
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De Florez Prize in Human Engineering, 1964
de Pacheco, Kaye MacKinnon, ca. 1910-ca. 1985
Dean Hall, 1887-1963
Dean, Oliver, 1783-1871
Dearborn, Heman Allen, 1831-1897
Department of Anatomy and Cellular Biology, 1893
Department of Anesthesia, 1970
Department of Art and Art History, 1930
Department of Biochemistry, 1893
Department of Chemistry, 1882
Department of Community Health, 1930
Department of Dermatology, 1897
The Department of Economics, 1946
Department of Medicine, 1893
Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology
Department of Neurology, 1893
Department of Neuroscience, 1983
Department of Neurosurgery, 1951
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 1893
Department of Ophthamology, 1893
Department of Orthopedic Surgery, 1906
Department of Otolaryngology, 1895
Department of Pathology, 1893
Department of Pediatrics, 1930
Department of Pharmacology, 1915
Department of Physics and Astronomy, 1854
Department of Physiology, 1893
Department of Psychiatry, 1928
Department of Radiation Oncology, 1968
Department of Radiology, 1915
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, 1955
Department of Surgery, 1893
Department of Urban and Environmental Policy, 1973
Department of Urology, 1910
Dental Health Sciences Building, 1969
Dewick, Cora Alma (Polk), 1875-1977
Dewick/MacPhie Dining Hall, 1959
Dickson Professorship of English and American History, 1913
Dirlam, Arland A., 1905-1979
Dog Cart, 1900
Dolbear, Amos Emerson, 1837-1910
Donald A. Cowdery Memorial Scholarship, 1946
Dr. Benjamin Andrews Professorship of Surgery, 1987
Dr. Philip E. A. Sheridan Prize, 1977
The Drug Bust, 1970
Dudley, Henry Watson, 1831-1906
Dugger, Edward Jr., 1919-75
Durkee, Frank W., 1861-1939
Durkee, Henrietta Noble Brown, 1871-1946
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