From the Archives

History, documents, and photos

Archive for the 'Academics' Category

William Wightman, the founding president

William Wightman probably had more influence on the early history of Wofford than anybody other than Benjamin Wofford.  As the first person named as a trustee in Benjamin Wofford’s will, as the chairman of the board of trustees until the college opened, as a member of the building committee, and finally, as the college’s first […]

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The good men do

A few weeks ago, I found a copy of a founder’s day talk given in 1964 by Dean of the College Philip Covington.  I wrote about Dean Covington last month.  From what I understand, this talk is quite characteristic of Covington, and of a generation of Wofford faculty members in its combination of wit (both […]

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The Faculty, the late 2000s version

Last week, I posted the oldest faculty photo in the collection.  Today, I'm posting the newest one.  This photo was taken by college photographer extraordinare Mark Olencki '75 before opening convocation on Thursday, Sept. 10.   I haven't been able to determine exactly when our faculty began to wear academic regalia, but I think it […]

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Another opening, another show

Today is Labor Day, which at Wofford means that the school year starts today.   The library is already full of students.  You can feel the very abrupt change in the atmosphere on campus and in the building.  Last week, the freshmen arrived on Wednesday, the pre-session faculty and staff meetings were Thursday, so there […]

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Early Commencement Program

I've been away for a few days at a conference of archivists – the annual meeting of the Society of American Archivists – to borrow a phrase, where people like me go to feel normal.  Of course, coming home, I found a few reference requests that had piled up in my absence, and in answering […]

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Last spring, I wrote several blog posts about various Commencements at Wofford and the traditions that had grown up around this highlight of the academic year.  Rather than re-write some of those entries, I'm going to refer you back to a few of them.   In one entry, I talked about the assorted traditions of […]

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John G. Clinkscales: The Mathematician-Politician

Say,did you hear the one about the math professor who ran for governor?   That sounds like a joke, but in the case of Dr. John G. Clinkscales, it’s a true story.  In 1914, running on a platform of compulsory public education, Clinkscales won some 40,000 votes and placed fourth in the race.  That may not sound like much […]

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The many lives of the Daniel Building

The Charles E. Daniel Building, across the street from Main Building and the Sandor Teszler Library, is sort of the quiet neighbor on the street.  Quiet and nondescript though it may seem, it has an interesting past.  In its first life, it was the college’s first free-standing library. The college received a bequest of $10,000 […]

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Little-known facts and factoids

My predecessor, Herbert Hucks Jr., of the class of 1934, served as a librarian and archivist at Wofford from 1947 to 1998, including 20 years as a part-time retired archivist.  He compiled a list of various "little-known facts" about Wofford.  I'll try to drop a few in every now and then, in the midst of […]

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Frogs and Poets

Colleges are full of odd stories that revolve around characters and controversies.  One of the stories that occasionally pops to the surface at Wofford is the long-running saga of Frogs and Poets.  In the fall of 1972, a small dispute arose in a faculty meeting over department budgets and over allocations in the library book budget.  Some of the faculty […]

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