is a historically black university located in Hampton, Virginia. Hampton was founded in 1868 (chartered 1870) by Samuel C. Armstrong as Hampton Normal and Agricultural Institute
, a land grant school in Elizabeth City County. It became Hampton
in 1930 and gained university status in 1984.Hampton's colors are blue and white and their
nickname is the Pirates. Hampton sports teams participate in NCAA Division I (I-AA for
football) in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC).Among the school's famous alumni is Dr. Booker T.
Washington.Typical of traditionally black colleges and universities, Hampton received much of its financial support in the years
following the Civil War from former officers and soldiers in
the Union Army. One of those Civil War
veterans who gave substantial sums to Hampton University was General William Jackson Palmer, a Union cavalry commander from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, who later built the Denver and Rio Grande Western
Railroad, and founded Colorado Springs,
Colorado. As the Civil War began in 1861, although his Quaker upbringing made Palmer abhor violence, his passion to see the slaves
free compelled him to enter the war. He was awarded the Medal of Honor
for bravery in 1894. Palmer Hall on the campus is named in his honor.