Date of Award


Document Type

Campus Access Thesis




Public History

First Advisor

Allison C. Marsh


This thesis explores the career of James Woodrow, professor, minister, scientist, and publisher in South Carolina during the end of the nineteenth century. After three decades of successful teaching, Woodrow faced accusations of introducing Columbia Theological Seminary students to Darwinian evolution in 1883, an activity he denied but for which he still lost his job. In his positions at the seminary and South Carolina College as well as his role as publisher of the Southern Presbyterian Review, Woodrow shaped Southern Presbyterians' opinions on scientific and theological topics, including evolution. His alternative educational strategies, including a book exchange and the use of his own trials to instruct, were extensions of his role as educator, and they illustrate the opportunities and methods available within the Southern Presbyterian community. Woodrow serves as a symbol for the intellectual world of the South during and after Reconstruction. Long considered a time and place lacking in intellectual pursuits, Woodrow indicates that learning and thinking were still a part of Southern society during the tumultuous second half of the nineteenth century, both inside and outside of institutions of higher education.


© 2011, Claire Ann White