Spirits of Mizzou - Shannon

Spirits of Mizzou

James Shannon

gravestone of james shannon

Grave monument of James Shannon.

plaque on gravestone of james shannon

Detail of plaque on grave monument. The inscription reads "Born in Monaghan Co. Ireland, April 23, 1799 and Died Feb. 23, 1859.
Second President, University of Missouri, Columbia, Mo. 1850-1856."

image of james shannon

James Shannon
(C:1/141/7)

James Shannon was chosen to lead the University as president in 1849, and was formally inaugurated on July 4th, 1850. During his time as president, Shannon made efforts to add religious training to the curriculum and to turn the University into a religious institution. Shannon was often at odds with James Rollins and William Switzler, two locally prominent politicians and university supporters. He also became involved in several pro-slavery discussions and openly supported Missouri raids into Kansas. Shannon’s term as president of the University came to an end in 1856, when the Board of Curators gave Shannon an ultimatum - he could remain university president or he could continue to preach. Shannon chose to resign from his position as president rather than give up preaching.

Sources:
Switzler, William F., History of Boone County Missouri, St. Louis, 1882.
Viles, Jonas, The University Of Missouri: A Centennial History, University of Missouri, 1939.
Stephens, Frank F., A History of the University of Missouri, University Press, 1962.

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Copyright © Curators of the University of Missouri 2008
Published by: University Archives muarchives.missouri.edu/
Prepared by Nicole Mautino
Revised: 2 June 2008
URL: https://muarchives.missouri.edu/exh_mu_cemetery_shannon.html

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