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Clarke County Historical Markers

Dr. Moses Waddel


  • Source: David Seibert
  • Marker: Dr. Moses Waddel
  • Location: Immediately East of the Entrance to the First Presbyterian Church, 185 E. Hancock Ave., Athens

DR. MOSES WADDEL NOTED EDUCATOR AND PRESBYTERIAN MINISTER

Dr. Moses Waddel, educator and minister, was born in 1770 in N.C. At fourteen he began teaching pupils near his home. Moving to Ga. in 1786, he taught in the Greensboro area until 1787, opening another school at Bethany, Greene County, in 1788. While at Bethany Waddel decided to enter the ministry. He studied at Hampden-Sydney College and graduated in less than nine months in 1791, thereafter combining the careers of teacher and minister.

Establishing his most famous academy at Willington, S.C., in 1804, Waddel continued his work there until 1819 when he became President of Franklin College, now the University of Ga. One of the most prominent ante-bellum leaders of that institution, he served until 1829. Unwilling to divorce education from religion, Waddel stimulated the religious life of the campus. In 1820 he organized and was pastor of the first Presbyterian congregation in Athens, which became the First Presbyterian Church. The present church building was erected in 1855.

Waddel died in 1840 at his son’s home in Athens. His pupils during a lifetime of teaching included John C. Calhoun, William H. Crawford, George R. Gilmer, Augustus B. Longstreet, and George McDuffie

029 - 11 GEORGIA HISTORICAL COMMISSION 1963