History of Clay Hall

The Past That Led Us Here

Clay BuildingThe R. E. CLAY EDUCATION BUILDING was erected in 1958 and is located on 35th Avenue, North, south of the JIM NANCE McCORD BUILDING. It was proclaimed the R. E. CLAY EDUCATION BUILDING in 1968. The building is a three story air-conditioned brick structure equipped with classrooms and special laboratories for teacher education, psychology and reading. The main offices are the departments of Administration; Curriculum and Instruction, Psychology, Teacher Education and the office of the Dean of the School of Education are housed in this building. 

Robert E. ClayROBERT E. CLAY

Robert E. Clay began his career for the State of Tennessee as a State Rosenwald School Agent in 1917, and was credited with building 501 Rosenwald schools in the State. As a representative of the State Department of Education, Mr. Clay held the position of State Developer of Negro Education from 1937 until his retirement in 1955. His association with the State education program brought him into contact with many influential persons in the State -- an opportunity which contributed to the popular demand for his services among teachers, principals, supervisors, Jeanes' teachers and other individuals and groups. He was prominently identified with local, state, and national organizations including the Interracial League of Tennessee Commission of Race Relations, National Youth Administration, National Negro Business League of America, and the State Better Homes Movement. In 1932 Mr. Clay received a B. S. degree from Tennessee A and I State College. 

Daddy Clay as he was affectionately referred to by students headed the TSU College Sunday School from 19-- 19 which he developed to a point that attracted State and national acclaim. On November 23, 1949, the faculty, staff and students honored Robert E. Clay for distinguished service in the development of the Sunday School and named it the Robert E. Clay Sunday School. 

* Robert E. Clay photos and history summary used by permission of TSU Library Special Collections.


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