From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Perry, William H., Sr.

(born: 1860  -  died: 1946) 

William H. Perry, Sr. was born in Indiana. After the death of his father, he and his mother moved to Louisville, KY. He was a graduate of Louisville Central High School, becoming a teacher at the school following his graduation in 1877. He was also a graduate of the Illinois Medical College. In 1908 Perry became the first African American physician to receive his license by passing the Kentucky State Board of Medical Examiners. He was also one of the co-founders of the Louisville Red Cross Hospital. The Perry School in Louisville was named in his honor posthumously in 1952; Perry had been head principal of the school, 1891-1927. The school was later merged with the Roosevelt School, and the name was changed to the Roosevelt-Perry Elementary School. William H. Perry, Sr. was the husband of Ana Ridley, from Nashville, a concert pianist and vocalist. For more see The Fascinating Story of Black Kentuckians, by A. A. Dunnigan; and "Professor William H. Perry, Sr. passes," KNEA Journal, vol. 18, issue 1 (1946), pp. 12-13. Mark Shepard provided additional information from the Personal Papers of William H. Perry, part of the grass-roots collection at the Lost Creek Historical Society.


Cited in this Entry

NKAA Entry: Louisville Central High School/Central High School Magnet Career Academy
NKAA Entry: Red Cross Hospital and Nurse Training Department (Louisville, KY)
NKAA Source: Fascinating story of Black Kentuckians : their heritage and traditions
NKAA Source: Kentucky Negro Educational Association journal (periodical)

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NKAA Entry:  Howard University Club of Kentucky (Louisville, KY)

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“Perry, William H., Sr.,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed February 21, 2019,

Last modified: 2017-07-19 17:51:31