The Loveliest Village: A Century of Transformation in the Upland South


The project focuses on the papers of George Fairbanks, Bishop Charles Todd Quintard, Telfair Hodgson and family, Bishop W. A. Guerry and family, and University lease records. Fairbanks, a founding trustee, managed business affairs of the University when it restarted in 1866 and documented its re-emergence. Quintard, second bishop of Tennessee, was the first administrative head of the new University and a major figure in the Episcopal Church. Bishop Guerry was a student, University chaplain, and for 20 years a trustee until his murder because of his racial views. His son Alexander served as Vice-Chancellor. The Hodgson family funded what later became a major hospital providing charity care for much of the southern Cumberland Plateau. Two members of the family were prominent University administrators. Because all residential and commercial property in Sewanee is leasehold, lease records enable study of residents, including faculty and staff, other professionals, laborers, and farmers. These collections depict a sparsely populated section of the Cumberland Plateau in 1856 that grew to a town of nearly 1,500 by the mid-1970s. Correspondence, diaries, official reports, manuscripts, town plans, drawings, surveys, court briefs, lease records, and newspaper accounts show the development of the railroad system, reconstruction, health care, education, the African American community, gender roles, socioeconomic class relations, and the emerging civil rights movement.


Cataloging Hidden Collections

Amount Awarded

Year Added



Sewanee: The University of the South


  • Vicki Sells

Collection Size

170 linear feet

Date Range

1856 - 1975

Geographic Scope

The area covered is the upland South. Movement into the community from other areas of the U.S. And Western Europe is also documented in these records.