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THE FIRST COLORED Professional, Clerical and Business DIRECTORY OF BALTIMORE CITY 8th Annual Edition, 1920-1921
Volume 500, Page 12   View pdf image (33K)
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Derrick Shorthand School



(Extract from "Philadelphia Tribune," February 2, 1918.)
"A Splendid Example of What Courage and Energy Can Accomplish"

"Miss Minnibelle J. Derrick, the daughter of the late Bishop Derrick, and
the founder of the Derrick Shorthand School, has been a resident of Philadelphia
for the past few years. She graduated from Wendell Phillips High School in Chi-
cago, and entered Oberlin College afterward, completing her work at Columbia
University. The following fall term she was appointed to the Chair of French at
Wilberforce University in Ohio, holding the same until the illness of her father
brought her to his side. It was after his death that she decided she would not
go away again to teach. In January, 1916, she decided to take a business course,
but this thought was not a new one, for always she had desired work pertaining
to stenography, as a business training: is the door leading to almost every oppor-
tunity; but she had always been discouraged by those who wanted her to con-
tinue her classical studies and finish abroad. Therefore, she entered the 30-Day
Business College with more than the average energy and determination, and
applied herself to the work so that at the end of twenty-six days she was sent
to her first position. At the end of sixty days she was able to repay in full her

"Colored young men and women are not welcome in the 30-Day College any
more than any other business college, and this thought preyed upon Miss Derrick's
mind. So it was not surprising that the President of the College was approached
by her with the proposition that she be allowed to teach colored students this
special system of which he held the exclusive rights. He "was at first entirely out
of sympathy with her, but before the call was over he had promised to think it
over and asked her to call again. The next call secured the sub-contract rights
to teach the system.

"The School was then started in a small room which Miss Helen Biddle loaned.
It was in a building on Arch Street—American Book Company—and was the prop-
erty of Miss Biddle. With a rented typewriter and desk, and no capital nor
financial help from any source, Miss Derrick started her work. Later in the
season she was doing so well that she removed to the Transportation Building
on South Fifteenth Street. Here the large number of graduates turned out and
the excellent positions secured for them brought such an overflow of applications
that it was again necessary to remove, and so larger floor space was leased in the
Childs Building, at Fifteenth and Chestnut Streets.

"Miss Derrick has always been proud of the fact that she had the wisdom
to see the advantages of this short course. Not only time and money were saved,
but a great deal of useless brain fatigue, for the methods were simple and com-

"It is the thinking people who are endorsing the work and taking the course,
through the press and from the platform everyone is strongly advised to take
the course, if they are competent and in earnest, for it is not every day that such
a wonderful opportunity is presented."

The School is at present located at 1435 Chestnut Street, but plans are being
made for still larger and better quarters, and it is confidently expected that the
students will always point with great pride to the DERRICK SHORTHAND



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THE FIRST COLORED Professional, Clerical and Business DIRECTORY OF BALTIMORE CITY 8th Annual Edition, 1920-1921
Volume 500, Page 12   View pdf image (33K)
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