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

Morton, Lena B.

(born: 1901  -  died: 1981) 

Educator and a scholar Lena Beatrice Morton was born in Flat Creek, KY, the daughter of Susie and William Morton. The family temporarily settled in Winchester, KY, where Morton's maternal grandfather Reverend H. A. Stewart was pastor of the CME Church. They later moved to Cincinnati, OH, where Lena graduated from high school and was a two-time graduate of the University of Cincinnati (UC). While at UC, she was a founding member of the school's first African American Greek organization, the Zeta Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

Morton earned her Ph.D. from Case Western Reserve University in 1947. She taught English at the high school and university level, holding leadership positions such as head of the division of humanities at Texas College.

Morton authored a number of works, including several books: Negro Poetry in America, Farewell to the Public Schools, Man Under Stress, Patterns of Language Usage, My First Sixty Years, and The Influence of the Sea Upon English Poetry.

For more see A History of Blacks in Kentucky, by M. B. Lucas and G. C. Wright; and "Lena Beatrice Morton" in vol. 6 of African American National Biography, edited by H. L. Gates, Jr. and E. B. Higginbotham.

Kentucky County & Region

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Kentucky Place (Town or City)

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Outside Kentucky Place Name

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Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Morton, Lena B.,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed July 25, 2024,

Last modified: 2020-11-25 15:30:43