Southern honor and Northern piety: Henry Tutwiler, Alva Woods, and the problem of discipline at The University of Alabama, 1831-1837

Show simple item record

dc.contributor Urban, Wayne J.
dc.contributor Adams, Natalie G.
dc.contributor Harris, Michael S.
dc.contributor Dyer, Beverly
dc.contributor.advisor Tomlinson, Stephen Windham, Kevin Lee 2017-02-28T22:31:27Z 2017-02-28T22:31:27Z 2010
dc.identifier.other u0015_0000001_0000363
dc.identifier.other Windham_alatus_0004D_10468
dc.description Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
dc.description.abstract The University of Alabama opened its doors in April 1831, and over the next six years, the first president, Alva Woods, was confronted by numerous episodes of student misdeeds. Knife fights, dueling, shootings, slave baiting, hazing, the torture of animals, and the destruction of property were common events on campus. Woods--a Baptist minister from Vermont--was never able to end the troubles; in fact, student defiance ultimately led to mass resignations by the faculty and the installation of a new president. However, the traditional reading of Woods' tenure at Alabama has not taken into account deeper issues. At the heart of Woods' difficulty was a contest for discipline. He came to Tuscaloosa determined to establish a religiously orthodox vision of virtuous conduct for the future leaders of Alabama. Woods himself was the product of New England's theological schism between Calvinism and Unitarianism. At that time he was mentored by his uncle Leonard Woods, who instilled in him a challenge to counter the spread of liberal theology by teaching the ethics of Christian piety. This was the charge that he pursued first at Columbian College, then as interim president of Brown University, as president of Transylvania University, and finally at Alabama. While resolved to carry out his mission, he was met by seemingly constant waves of student insubordination. The students hailed from the homes of the planter elite where their rearing supplied them with ideals of privilege, and where spiritedness and indulged independence were rewarded rather than harnessed. Honor not piety was the Southern way and this premise was juxtapose Woods' theory of moral discipline. These two guiding principles remained at loggerheads until 1837 when Woods retreated to New England. Moreover, these are the two ideologies that have been neglected in the historiography of The University of Alabama. The first six years of the University's history must be understood not just as an era where boys were being boys or where student actions are summed up as the expected exaggerations of adolescence; rather, it was an era shaped by the clash of two great cultures, honor and piety.
dc.format.extent 177 p.
dc.format.medium electronic
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf
dc.language English
dc.language.iso en_US
dc.publisher University of Alabama Libraries
dc.relation.ispartof The University of Alabama Electronic Theses and Dissertations
dc.relation.ispartof The University of Alabama Libraries Digital Collections
dc.relation.hasversion born digital
dc.rights All rights reserved by the author unless otherwise indicated.
dc.subject.other Higher Education Administration
dc.subject.other Education, History of
dc.subject.other History, United States
dc.title Southern honor and Northern piety: Henry Tutwiler, Alva Woods, and the problem of discipline at The University of Alabama, 1831-1837
dc.type thesis
dc.type text University of Alabama. Dept. of Educational Leadership, Policy, and Technology Studies Higher Education Administration The University of Alabama doctoral Ph.D.

Files in this item

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show simple item record

Search DSpace


My Account