MEREDITH G. FERGUSON (1894-1978)
Ferguson was born on August 24, 1894, in Arlington, Texas. In 1912, he
attended Tennessee State Agricultural and Industrial Normal School for
Negroes (today's Tennessee State University) in Nashville. A reputable
student, Ferguson became president of his senior class. In 1915, he was
graduated from the Tennessee State A & I Normal School.
Meredith continued to live in Nashville and serve his alma mater. He served as the first president of the Athletic Association, business manager and president of the Alumni Association, and instructor of accounting at Tennessee State Agricultural and Industrial College.
After America's entry into the First World War, Ferguson entered the United States Army. He became one of fifteen blacks selected from the 368th Infantry to attend division Army War School in Washington, D. C. In 1918, Ferguson received an officer's commission in the United States Army. He was transferred to Central Officers' Training School at Camp Pike, Arkansas, where he served as an instructor for black troops. After completing his military service, Meredith G. Ferguson studied business administration at LaSalle College.
In 1924, Ferguson began his career at the Citizens Savings Bank and Trust Company in Nashville, one of the oldest continuously operated African-American financial institutions in the United States. He held many supervisory responsibilities within the bank, rising quickly through the ranks. In 1959, after the death of the bank's president (Henry A. Boyd), Ferguson became president of Citizens Bank. The bank experienced a period of growth and moved from its old quarters to the Morris Memorial Building at Fourth Avenue, North, and Charlotte Street.
Meredith G. Ferguson's bank position and leadership made him a respected leader on local and national levels. He held many offices and positions: an auditor for the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.; chairman of the fraternity's audit committee for ten years; treasurer of the AGORA Assembly; and treasurer for the Tau Lambda Chapter of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., among other positions of responsibility and honor. Charles H. Wesley, president of Wilberforce University, said of Ferguson: "Meredith G. Ferguson was an individual whose financial recommendations and monetary proposals would have had a sobering affect on any organization."
On March 24, 1978, Meredith G. Ferguson, a notable black leader of AfricanArnerican Nashville, died and was interred two days later in Nashville's Greenwood Cemetery.
Reavis L. Mitchell, Jr.