Wendell P. Terrell, 1906

Wendell P. Terrell
Courtesy MIT Museum

Wendell P. Terrell, MIT Class of 1906

Wendell Phillip Terrell '06 was the son of two prominent educators from Texas. Both parents were teachers in the Fort Worth school system. His mother, Marcelite Landry, was a music teacher educated at Ginn & Company Summer School of Music. Isaiah Milligan Terrell was born into slavery and, after gaining his freedom, established the first school for freed slaves in Fort Worth, later named in his honor. (Today, plans are underway to make the I.M. Terrell Elementary School two high schools: a STEM academy and a visual and performing arts academy.)

After earning a Bachelor’s from Kansas State A&M, Terrell the younger went to MIT for a second degree in mechanical engineering. After graduating from MIT, he taught at Prairie View State College in Texas, where his father was principal, and helped to establish a department of mechanic arts.

Terrell later returned to MIT for additional studies in the field of architecture. By the end of WorId War II, he had accepted a position as assistant mechanical engineer with the National Bureau of Standards in Washington, D.C.

Timeline: 1900s
School: School of Architecture and PlanningSchool of Engineering
Department: ArchitectureMechanical Engineering
Career: EducationEngineeringMilitary
Object: Image
Collection: HBCUs, Roots and Exponents 1875-1920, Students, Technique Yearbook