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

Rogers, Lydia Jetton

(born: 1899  -  died: Oct. 7, 1998) 

Lydia Jetton Rogers was born in Louisville, KY, the daughter of Henrietta and John Jetton, who was  a post office clerk in Louisville [source: 1910 U.S. Federal Census].

Lydia was a researcher in clothing and textiles at the Bureau of Standards, where she studied synthetic fibers for the military. She was also acting head of the Home Economics Department at Howard University. In 1951, she took a two-year leave to establish a home economics department at Osmund College in Nigeria, Africa. She retired from Howard University in the 1960s.

In 1930, while establishing her career, Lydia Jetton was a divorcee living in Chicago, IL on South Parkway. She was a roommate of Kentuckians Ethel Hill, a department store stenographer, and Frankie V. Adams, then a secretary at the YWCA [source: U.S. Federal Census].

In 1939, Jetton returned to Bennett College in Greensboro, NC as director of student services, later becoming a home economics instructor there. She had earned her bachelor's degree in home economics from Bennett College, her master's degree in home economics from the University of Wisconsin, and she was studying for her doctorate during the summers at Columbia University.

SOURCES: Hill's Greensboro (Guilford County, N.C.) City Directory, volumes 1936-1942; "In its program...," The Crisis, December 1939, p. 357, bottom of column 3; and "3 members of Bennett faculty get awards," The Afro American, 4/27/1940, p. 9].

By 1949, Lydia Jetton had married Otis Rogers; their  marriage would end in divorce. The couple lived in Washington, DC at 341 Bryant St. NW. Lydia Rogers' work with the military allowed her to travel abroad during World War II, arriving back in the U.S. on the Samaria (ship), 9/18/1949 [source: U.S. Department of Justice Immigration and Naturalization Service, List of In-bound Passengers, List No. 31, p. 141].

Lydia Jetton Rogers was 100 years old when she died, 10/7/1998 in Washington, DC.

For more see The Fascinating Story of Black Kentuckians, by A. A. Dunnigan; and "Lydia Rogers dies; professor at Howard U., The Washington Post, Obituaries section, p. B6.

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“Rogers, Lydia Jetton,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed May 21, 2024,

Last modified: 2022-08-19 15:46:37