Baptist university opens in Dallas
On this day in 1905, Texas Baptist University, in the Oak Cliff section of Dallas, began its first classes. Church-related institutions of higher education had become quite important in Texas in the previous century. The Methodists had started twenty-one, the Baptists were next with ten, followed by the Presbyterians with eight, the Catholics with four, the Christian Church with three, the Episcopalians and Lutherans with two each, and the Congregationalists with one. The school in Oak Cliff was founded by the Baptist Missionary Association of Texas. Dr. J. R. Pentuff was president, and A. S. Laird was professor of mathematics. Though the institution grew respectably during its first few years, it was closed in 1912. It had been dependent upon the missionary association, which lost the support of many congregations. Such ephemeral institutions as TBU continue to open and close, while hundreds of colleges and universities, both church-related and secular, provide higher education in Texas.