July 9, 2001
P. L. Harned, the person for whom Harned Hall is named, played a significant role in making higher education a priority in the State of Tennessee, particularly in the early 1920s. What did he do?
Answer: As State Commissioner of Education, Harned led a lobby to form a public education system. In 1925, during the administration of Austin Peay, the legislature passed "An Act to Establish and Maintain a Uniform System of Education" that consolidated and extended all the legislation on education that had built up since 1914. That same year, the four original normal schools were transformed into four-year state colleges. Austin Peay was one of those colleges.