LT COL Charity Adams Earley
2 major sources – A New York Times Article that was part of the “Beyond the World War II We Know,” series and an article by By Dr. Kelly A. Spring in 2017 for the National Women’s History Museum.
Both were great articles and I wanted to give them the credit up front, and I’ll also link them and the other sources I used in the show notes
Lt. Col. Charity Edna Adams (Married name would become name Earley) was born on December 5, 1918 in Kittrell, North Carolina. She grew up in Columbia, South Carolina. She was the oldest of 4 children. Her father was a minister, and her mother was a teacher. Adams was intellectually advanced, and began elementary school as a second grader. During her last year in elementary school she tested for early advancement to high school. Adams and twelve others passed the test for high school. However, her parents did not allow her to move up early, because she has already several grades ahead of her peers.
Later she graduated as valedictorian from Booker T. Washington High School. Graduating top of her class enabled her to gain a scholarship, so that she could attend Wilburforce University in Ohio, one of the best African American higher educational institutions at the time.