Skip to Main Content

Mercer University Presidents

William Heard Kilpatrick (acting, 1903-1905)

  • Served as acting president while teaching mathematicskilpatrick
  • Instituted the first "academic cap and gown" at the 1904 commencement 
  • Quick bio: (1871-1965); A.B., A.M., Ph.D., LL.D.; spouses: Mary Beman Guyton (1898), Margaret Marigault Pinckney (1908), and Marion Y. Ostrander (1940)


​Kilpatrick, at Charles Lee Smith's inauguration:

"There is now at Mercer University an ideality, a spiritual force which takes such strong hold of the students as to make them feel forever indebted to the college for the best single thing in their lives....Our work, then, is to preserve this inheritance."

Mercerian, "On the Campus," February 1906:

"Professor Kilpatrick (in Ethics class): 'Mr. Bernd, when Eve ate the apple was that a case of inner or outer intention?' 
Bernd: 'I don't know, sir, but I think the apple was inner (in her).'"

This work by Mercer University Libraries is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License