Presidential Records of Spright Dowell
RG No.: 533
Listed by: Alfrieda Brummitt
Date: March 11, 1998

Date Span: 1917-1928

Scope / Content: Collection consists of President Dowell's correspondence and reports covering events and subjects at the campus, state, and national level that impacted the administration of Auburn University. Also includes personal papers from before and after his tenure as API president. Divided into 4 series:  I. President's Reports to the Board of Trustees; II. Correspondence and Reports; III. Additions from Thach Papers; IV. Personal Correspondence.

Biographical Sketch: Dowell served as president of Alabama Polytechnic Institute (now Auburn University), 1920-28. Student and alumni discontent with his leadership forced him from office.

SERIES 1: PRESIDENT'S REPORTS TO BOARD OF TRUSTEES:  Required annually of President.  Semi-annual reports kept Trustees informed of progress made during year and were more informal than Annual Reports. Usually discussed state of the College.  A group of students, called the "Double Dozen," who were unhappy with Dowell's administration gained political backing from faculty and alumni.  In October 1927 the Double Dozen brought charges of unfitness against Dowell that led to his resignation in November.

SERIES 2: CORRESPONDENCE AND REPORTS:   Concerning the business of the college, particularly financial and fund-raising activities, accreditation, Alabama legislative acts, the Farm Bureau, and college community.

SERIES 3: ADDITIONS FROM THACH PAPERS:  These papers were inadvertently filed with those of API President Charles Coleman Thach, Dowell's predecessor.

SERIES 4:  PERSONAL CORRESPONDENCE:  This series is a mixture of personal and professional correspondence covering the latter years of Thach's term as API president and the first years of Dowell's term.