Upon Mrs. Leath’s death in 1858, her Estate provided the orphanage with twenty additional acres of land and money to start an Orphan’s Educational Fund. In honor and recognition of Mrs. Leath’s contributions to the welfare of the Asylum, the name of the organization was changed from the Protestant Widows’ and Orphans’ Asylum to the Leath Orphan Asylum by an Act of the 1857 and 1858 Tennessee Legislature.  In addition to the Asylum’s new name, a new organizational structure was adopted.  A Board of Trustees made up of seven prominent men was appointed, but the day-to-day supervision of the Home remained with the twelve-member “Board of Lady Managers”. These ladies of Memphis’ Protestant churches paid the salary of the Asylum’s matron.

Change to Leath Orphan Asylum

Photo of charter text