Wake Forest Historical Museum

Due to increased COVID-19 infections in Wake County, the museum is closed to visitors. Please check back for updates.

“Doctor” Tom Jeffries

Doctor Tom

Born a slave in Virginia, Tom Jeffries came to Wake Forest College in 1884 and continued working there for 43-years. Students and professors often sought his advice and wisdom, and students gave him the honorary title of “Doctor.” Today Jeffries is most famous for construction of the 3,000 foot stone wall that still encircles the campus.

When Jeffries died in July 1927, his funeral was held in the College Chapel with the faculty serving as honorary pall bearers.

His gravesite, overgrown and ostensibly “lost” for decades, was recently rediscovered by a visiting historian conducting research in the cemetery adjacent to the Massenburg Center in the town’s northeast neighborhood.

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Mission

To preserve and share the unique history and culture of Wake Forest – College, Town, and University.