Lincoln University in Pennsylvania was founded in 1854 by John Miller Dickey, a Presbyterian minister and his wife, Sarah Emlen Cresson. It is located on Baltimore Pike in southern Chester County, a rural part of southeastern Pennsylvania. Lincoln was originally founded under the name Ashmun Institute, after the religious leader and social reformer, Jehudi Ashmun, to educate young men of African descent. It is the first degree-awarding school of the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) in the United States.
Dickey, the first president of the institute, supported the establishment of Liberia as a colony for African Americans and encouraged the Institutes first students to support the movement.
In 1866, about a year after President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated, the school was renamed to Lincoln University. In 1945 Lincoln alumnus, Dr. Horace Mann Bond, was elected to be the first African American president of the University. Lincoln began accepting female students in 1952. In 1972 Lincoln formally associated with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and became a state-related coeducational university. It is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.