David C. Barrow Jr. (1852-1929)
David Barrow Jr. served as chancellor of the University of Georgia from 1906 to 1925,
Barrow's dedication to public service and education was in part an outgrowth of his family's tradition. David Crenshaw Barrow Jr. was born in 1852 in Oglethorpe County, where his father, David C. Barrow Sr., was a leading planter and a trustee of the university. His mother, Sarah Pope Barrow, was the granddaughter of former governor and senator Wilson Lumpkin. She died when Barrow was three. The principal influences on his character were his father, his maternal grandmother, Lucy Lumpkin Pope, and his governess (later his stepmother), Priscilla Flint Sawyer. Barrow's values were also molded by a conversion to Methodism as a young man.
Barrow was educated at the University of Georgia, receiving both a B.S. and a degree in engineering in 1874. After trying the law and geological surveying, he became in turn a popular professor of mathematics and engineering, a department head, dean under Chancellor Walter B. Hill, acting chancellor upon Hill's death (1905), and in 1906, chancellor. Building upon Hill's vision and plans (many of which he had helped formulate as dean), Barrow led the university through a period of great growth.
At the time of his appointment as chancellor, the University of Georgia could be accurately described as a collection of colleges,
Barrow's contributions to the university, however, cannot be measured solely in statistics. His moral and spiritual influence
Barrow's accomplishments were also partly due to his political astuteness. The other state colleges were part of the university by law though not in fact and thus included in Barrow's administrative duties. Controversies developed with both the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta and the all-female Georgia Normal and Industrial College (later Georgia College and State University) in Milledgeville, two schools aggressively seeking independence from the university in Athens. Barrow resolved these disputes adroitly.
He also used his political skills in dealing with the usual problems of administering a university, such as the place of intercollegiate athletics and the role of powerful deans with statewide constituencies (especially the College of Agriculture). Barrow often had to lobby the legislature for funds.
Barrow was often called upon for public service outside of his university duties. In 1907, at the request of Booker T. Washington, Barrow served on the board of the Jeanes Fund for the improvement of rural education for African Americans.
Barrow's personal life was also rich and full. He married Frances Ingle Childs of Athens in 1879, and they had four children and ten grandchildren. Barrow's name survives in Barrow County, in an Athens elementary school and an Athens street, and at the University of Georgia in Barrow Hall and the David C. Barrow Chair of Mathematics. Barrow died in 1929.
Robert Preston Brooks, The University of Georgia under Sixteen Administrations: 1785-1955 (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1956).
Thomas G. Dyer, The University of Georgia: A Bicentennial History (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1985).
Benjamin B. Tate, Macon State College
A project of the Georgia Humanities Council, in partnership with the University of Georgia Press, the University System of Georgia/GALILEO, and the Office of the Governor.