About the author: Dr. Judith Longacre received a BA in Political Science from Wilson College, and her M.Ed, MA, and PhD from McGill University in Montreal Quebec. She has diplomas in moral education, teaching English as a second language, special education, and proficiency in Italian as a second language. She is the author of The History of Wilson College 1868-1970 and A Photo History of Wilson College (Mellen, 1997).
1997 0-7734-8696-8 This fascinating volume traces the social as well as historical development of Wilson College in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, from 1868 until the retirement of President Paul Swain Havens in 1970. Besides archival and library research including old issues of literary journals, yearbooks, and alumnae bulletins, the study incorporates letters from Wilson alumnae (those written at the time of their attendance, and later reminiscences) and formal interviews with alumnae and former professors. These bring the campus social scene vividly to life, on topics as disparate as faculty personalities, the honor system in examinations, the issue of smoking, and the effects of the World Wars. It shows how Wilson's small size, its practice of encouraging congenial interaction between students and faculty, its commitment to teaching, its long term affiliation with the Presbyterian Church, and its close ties with the community of Chambersburg contributed to its ability to survive the first wave of college closures which particularly began to affect small, single-sex, private liberal arts colleges in the second half of the 1960s. It also identifies the strengths and weaknesses of past Presidents and Lady Principals, with particular attention to Paul Swain Havens, the last of Wilson's traditional presidents.
2003 0-7734-6687-8 This second volume in the history of Wilson College begins with a discussion of the problems generic to small private colleges in the 1960s and 70s: operating deficits, inflation; campus disturbances, fierce competition for faculty, curriculum changes, falling enrolments, changing student bodies. In February 1979, it was announced that the College was to be closed, which prompted an historic court case. This study then examines the court case and its aftermath.