Two African American icons of higher education in North Carolina will be recognized by having sections of highways in the state named in their honor. The outgoing secretary of the department of transportation in North Carolina set in motion a plan to have stretches of interstate highways in North Carolina named for Julius L. Chambers and John Hope Franklin.
Julius L. Chambers, who died in 2013, was the former chancellor of North Carolina Central University and the former director-counsel and president of the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund. Dr. Chambers was a summa cum laude graduate of what is now North Carolina Central University. He held a master’s degree in history and a law degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he graduated first in his class and was editor of the law review. He later earned a master’s degree in law from Columbia.
John Hope Franklin, who died in 2009, was the James B. Duke Professor Emeritus of History at Duke University and one of the most prolific and respected historians of the twentieth century. Dr. Franklin was a graduate of Fisk University in Nashville and earned master’s and doctoral degrees at Harvard University. Over the course of a long academic career, Professor Franklin taught at North Carolina Central University, Howard University in Washington, D.C., and Brooklyn College in New York. In 1964 Franklin was hired to the faculty at the University of Chicago. He remained there for 16 years before accepting a position at Duke. He later spent seven years on the faculty of Duke Law School. He retired from teaching in 1992.