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President's Office. Francis Pendleton Gaines Records

Finding Aid & Inventory

Francis Pendleton Gaines was president of Wake Forest College, 1927-1930. This collection contains correspondence and subject files from Gaines' tenure as College president.

Biographical and Historical Note

Francis Pendleton Gaines was born on April 21, 1892. He became president of Wake Forest College in 1927. Reputed as a skilled teacher and orator, although he had not seen the campus, Gaines was selected by the College Board of Trustees as president by unanimous vote. In his inaugural address, Gaines addressed three goals he held in regard to Wake Forest College: "1. Wake Forest must be a small college; 2. It must be a cultural college; 3. It must be a Christian college." Gaines' insistence of restricting the college's attendance was a major point of contention between himself and other Wake Forest officials, and even though the Wake Forest officials rejected his plan to adopt "a definite policy of limitation and selection of students," his administration saw a decline in both freshman enrollment and overall attendance. In spite of this, Gaines maintained a positive and respectable relationship with the Wake Forest community and others, using his oratory experience to speak on different subjects. By the 1940s, he was making over forty addresses a year in a variety of states.

Gaines resigned from his position as Wake Forest president in 1930 on amicable terms to accept a position as president of Washington and Lee University. He remained there until his retirement in 1959. Gaines died on December 31, 1963.

Collection Overview

This collection contains correspondence and subject files related to College administration.

This collection is arranged in four series organized by year, 1927-1930. The series are arranged alphabetically.

Collection Inventory

  • Correspondence and Subject Files  (1927 May-December)
    • A box 1 folder 1
    • B box 1 folder 2
    • C box 1 folder 3
    • D box 1 folder 4
    • E box 1 folder 5
    • F box 1 folder 6
    • G box 1 folder 7
    • H box 1 folder 8
    • I-J box 1 folder 9
    • K box 1 folder 10
    • L box 1 folder 11
    • M box 1 folder 12
    • N box 1 folder 13
    • O box 1 folder 14
    • P-Q box 1 folder 15
    • R box 1 folder 16
    • S box 1 folder 17
    • T box 1 folder 18
    • U-V box 1 folder 19
    • W box 1 folder 20
    • X-Y-Z box 1 folder 21
  • Correspondence and Subject Files  (1928)
    • A box 1 folder 22
    • Alumni Campaign/Centennial Fund box 1 folder 23
    • B box 1 folder 24
    • C box 1 folder 25
    • D box 1 folder 26
    • E box 1 folder 27
    • F box 1 folder 28
    • G box 1 folder 29
    • H box 1 folder 30
    • I box 1 folder 31
    • J box 1 folder 32
    • K box 1 folder 33
    • L box 1 folder 34
    • M box 1 folder 35
    • N-O box 1 folder 36
    • P-Q box 1 folder 37
    • Pulpit Committee [Wake Forest Baptist Church] box 1 folder 38
    • R box 1 folder 39
    • S box 1 folder 40
    • Al Smith Club - Newspaper Clippings box 1 folder 41
    • Al Smith Club - Support for Gaines box 1 folder 42
    • Al Smith Club - Criticism (Against) box 1 folder 43
    • T box 1 folder 44
    • U-V box 1 folder 45
    • W box 1 folder 46
    • X-Y-Z box 1 folder 47
  • Correspondence and Subject Files  (1929)
    • A box 2 folder 48
    • B box 2 folder 49
    • C box 2 folder 50
    • D box 2 folder 51
    • E box 2 folder 52
    • F box 2 folder 53
    • G box 2 folder 54
    • H box 2 folder 55
    • I-J box 2 folder 56
    • K box 2 folder 57
    • L box 2 folder 58
    • M box 2 folder 59
    • N-O box 2 folder 60
    • P-Q box 2 folder 61
    • R box 2 folder 62
    • S box 2 folder 63
    • T box 2 folder 64
    • U-V box 2 folder 65
    • W box 2 folder 66
    • X-Y-Z box 2 folder 67
  • Correspondence and Subject Files  (1930)
    • A box 2 folder 68
    • Advisory Board box 2 folder 69
    • B box 2 folder 70
    • C box 2 folder 71
    • D box 2 folder 72
    • E box 2 folder 73
    • F box 2 folder 74
    • G box 2 folder 75
    • H box 2 folder 76
    • I-J box 2 folder 77
    • K box 2 folder 78
    • L box 2 folder 79
    • M box 2 folder 80
    • N-O box 2 folder 81
    • P-Q box 2 folder 82
    • R box 2 folder 83
    • S box 2 folder 84
    • T box 2 folder 85
    • U-V box 2 folder 86
    • W box 2 folder 87
    • Wake Forest Students and professors box 2 folder 88
    • X-Y-Z box 2 folder 89

Summary Information

Repository
Z. Smith Reynolds Library Special Collections and Archives
Title
President's Office. Francis Pendleton Gaines Records
ID
RG1.8
Date [inclusive]
1927-1930
Quantity
2 record cartons
Extent
2.6  Linear Feet

Administrative Information

Publication Information
Z. Smith Reynolds Library Special Collections and Archives
Revision Description
Revised by Stephanie Bennett, 2020, 2022
Access
This collection is open for use. 
Preferred Citation
President's Office. Francis Pendleton Gaines Records (RG1.8), Z. Smith Reynolds Library Special Collections and Archives, Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC, USA. 

The following print item at Z. Smith Reynolds Library is related to this collection: McLean, Angus Wilton, 1870-1935. "Address of Angus W. McLean, Govnernor of North Carolina, on the occasion of the inauguration of Dr. Francis P. Gaines as President of Wake Forest College." April 25, 1928, Wake Forest, N.C. LD5721.W517 G35 1928

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