Central Nazarene College

By: H. Allen Anderson

Type: General Entry

Published: 1952

Updated: December 1, 1994

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Central Nazarene College, near Hamlin, was established for the Hamlin, San Antonio, and New Mexico districts of the Church of the Nazarene under the guidance of Rev. W. E. Fisher, superintendent of the Abilene and Hamlin districts. The college was chartered in 1909, when a board of directors and a building committee were elected. The charter provided for the teaching of the doctrine of salvation as set forth in the church manual, and the faculty had to meet church requirements for teaching of "sanctification." The school opened in 1911 with J. E. L. Moore as president and with grammar, academy, and junior college departments. Students were required to attend chapel, prayer meeting, Sunday school, and church services and to take Bible courses. The curriculum was primarily for ministerial students; their courses included Greek, Hebrew, church history, homiletics, and Bible. Courses in literature, commerce, speech, and music were also offered. Though it had no football or baseball program, the college encouraged physical education and later had a modified military-training program. Central became the only Nazarene college in Texas when it was merged with the Nazarene school at Pilot Point not long after 19ll.

The physical plant, located just southwest of downtown Hamlin, included a gray stone administration building and two wooden dormitories on a campus of twenty-three acres. Library and laboratory facilities were inadequate for standard work, however. Throughout most of its eighteen years of existence, Central Nazarene College averaged between 100 and 150 students; in the 1922–23 session it had 122 students and graduated eight from the college department and fourteen from the academy department. In 1929, as the general economy faltered, President B. F. Neeley agreed to the consolidation of Central with Bethany Peniel College in Bethany, Oklahoma. The former administration building in Hamlin was used as a church by the local Nazarene congregation until it burned in 1934; a new church building replaced it in 1936.

Hooper Shelton and Homer Hutto, The First 100 Years of Jones County (Stamford, Texas: Shelton, 1978).


  • Education
  • Defunct Elementary and Secondary Schools
  • Religion
  • Nazarene

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

H. Allen Anderson, “Central Nazarene College,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed September 20, 2021, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/central-nazarene-college.

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

December 1, 1994