Skip to Main Content

Mercer University Presidents

Pinckney Daniel Pollock (1896-1903)

  • Was the first layman to hold the office of University President
  • Raised $115,000 for the endowment fund
  • Doubled the number of faculty and students
  • Constructed Groover, Ware, and Wiggs halls
  • Placed emphasis on oratory competitions, in which Mercer was undefeated for a number of years
  • Abolished the sub-freshman preparatory school, making Mercer fully a college
  • Employed several young faculty members who later made national reputations at major universities, including William Heard Kilpatrick in Education and Edmund Cody Burnett in History
  • Oversaw publication of the Mercerian, the Kinetoscope, and a student handbook
  • Quick bio: (1860-1905); LL.B., A.M., LL.D.; spouse: Eva Selman (1895)


"Mercer Rally Song," Mercer-Athens Champion Debate, May 28, 1898:

"When you see our speakers come, fearless, on the floor,
Just hold your breath a little—some'ns goin' to happen 'shore,'
And when they both begin to 'argify' and speak,
See proud Athens' knees a growin' 'kinder' weak."

Mercerian, June 1898:

"Resolved, 'That the breaking up of the Solid South would be conducive of the best interests of the South.' The question was well argued by both sides, but Messrs. [John Roach] Straton and [J. C.] Flannigan were too strong for Messrs. Walker and Weddington [of the University of Georgia], and the decision was rendered in favor of Mercer. The students of Mercer by their gentlemanly manners made a most favorable impression upon the people of Atlanta."

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