Charles Kimbrough
VHFP Visionary

Born June 24, 1927, in Prospect, Tennessee

Civil Rights Activist, Retired Veterinarian and Minister

Interviewed by Lauren Parker
2004 Visionary Heritage Fellow
Fisk University

Dr. Charles Kimbrough was born only a short distance from Pulaski, Tennessee, the birthplace of the Klu Klux Klan. Heavily influenced by his family, he learned at an early age the importance of perseverance, determination and hard work.

Dr. Kimbrough served in the Korean War, earning a Purple Heart, Medical Combat Award and Bronze Star in 1950 as a result of the injuries he sustained. He spent seven years in the military and traveled extensively. During his tour of duty in France, he became fluent in French. Using the GI Bill, Kimbrough attended Tennessee Agricultural and Industrial State University, where he graduated in 1956 with honors and a BS in Biology. He then entered Tuskegee Institute and earned a Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine. After receiving this degree in 1960, he became one of the first African Americans to hold a license to practice veterinary medicine in the state of Tennessee.

This interview has
been archived in the
NVLP Collection of
African American
Oral Histories at the
Library of Congress
American Folklife
As a civil rights activist, Dr. Kimbrough also introduced hundreds of African Americans to the mission, purpose and hope inspired through the NAACP. He established and organized NAACP chapters in Sparta, Illinois (Randolph County Branch), Dugoin, Illinois (Perry County Branch), Pulaski, Tennessee (Giles County Branch), and Waverly Tennessee (Waverly Branch). From 1973 – 1980, he was the President of the Nashville, Tennessee Branch, where he saw a surge in chapter membership, addressing civil rights issues within the local African American community. As a minister, Dr. Kimbrough has also touched thousands of lives.

He is the proud father of one son, Rev. Adric Winters Kimbrough, three special sons, Jeff and Stanford Strong, Jeffrey Brown, and one daughter, Gwenell Buchanan. He has five grandchildren. Now in retirement, Dr. Kimbrough and his wife own Bordeaux Realty Plus.



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