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William Wesley Staley Collection

Identifier: EUA020


This collection includes materials relating to William Wesley Staley, President of Elon College from 1894 to 1905. Some of the materials relate directly to his time as President, while other documents have been collected over the years to form the collection. For more information about what is included, please see the section below titled "Detailed Description of the Collection."


  • 1884 - 2001

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Copyright Notice

The nature of the Archives and Special Collections of Belk Library means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. The Archives and Special Collections of Belk Library claims only physical ownership of most materials. The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to the U.S. Copyright Law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research of otherwise should be fully credited with the source.

Biographical / Historical

The 2012 website for the Elon University Office of the President states the following about former President William Wesley Staley. "Born in 1849, Rev. William W. Staley was a native of Alamance County. Staley studied under former President Long at Graham High School before graduating from Trinity College (now Duke University) in 1874. Following graduation, he became a member of the Graham High School faculty and was ordained as a minister of the Christian Church before pursuing graduate studies at the University of Virginia from 1877 to 1878. He served as superintendent of public instruction for Alamance County while living in Graham with his wife, Martha L. Pearce, before they moved to Suffolk, Va., where Staley served as pastor of the Christian Church. In an interesting move, Staley agreed to serve as a non-resident president of Elon, without salary or expense account, and began making frequent trips between Elon and Suffolk. As second president of the new college, Staley oversaw plans that brought the college out of debt for the first time in its history and paved the way for much-needed improvements to the campus. A new dormitory constructed in 1968 was named Staley Hall in his honor." Rev. Staley died in 1932.


0.5 Linear Feet (1 archival box)

Language of Materials



The collection is arranged chronologically and then alphabetically by type of material.

Physical Location

The collection is located in the Carol Grotnes Belk Library Archives and Special Collections at Elon University. Please contact the Archivist and Special Collections Librarian for further details about the location.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Unknown. Materials collected and assembled over many years to form collection.

Related Materials

For related materials pertaining to William Wesley Staley, please refer to the following link to the Belk Library catalog describing the William Wesley Staley presidential letter books, which encompass the years 1894-1913. The original letter books can be found in the Belk Library Archives and Special Collections. Transcriptions of the letter books can be found by following this link:

Processing Information

Processed by Katie Nash, October, 2010

Encoded by Shaunta Alvarez, October, 2012
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
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Repository Details

Part of the Belk Library Archives & Special Collections Repository

100 Campus Drive
2550 Campus Box
Elon North Carolina 27244 USA