William K. Scarborough

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William K. Scarborough
Born(1933-01-17)January 17, 1933[1]
DiedMay 17, 2020(2020-05-17) (aged 87)[2]
Known forMassive Resistance
SpousePatricia Carruthers Scarborough
Academic background
EducationUniversity of North Carolina (B.A 1954)[3]
Cornell University (MA)
University of North Carolina (PhD 1962)[4]
Academic work
Sub-disciplineAmerican South
InstitutionsUniversity of Southern Mississippi 1964-2009

William Kauffman Scarborough was a professor emeritus of history at the University of Southern Mississippi. He was the Charles W. Moorman Distinguished Alumni Professor in the Humanities from 1996 to 1998.

He was an outspoken opponent of school integration and supporter of massive resistance, believing white people to be the "superior race" and black people to be "genetically inferior."[4] He was a member of the Citizens' Councils.[5]

Scarborough was a featured interviewee in the Stanley Nelson Jr. film Freedom Summer.[5] Scarborough spoke at the Citadel on the subject of the secession of South Carolina.[6]


Scarborough earned his B.A at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill in 1954. He served in the Navy 1954-56 as a gunnery officer on the USS New Jersey (BB-62).[3] He earned his M.A. at Cornell and his doctorate at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill in 1962. He taught for a year at Northeast Louisiana University before taking employment at Southern Miss, where he remained. The records of his work, 27 feet and 8500 documents, including materials associated with the Citizens' Councils, are archived at the University of North Carolina libraries.[7]

Scarborough died in May 2020.[8]

Selected publications[edit]

  • Heritage, not hate. Let's keep the state flag[9]
  • Overseer: Plantation Management in the Old South[10]
  • Masters of the Big House: Elite Slaveholders of the Mid-Nineteenth-Century South[11]
  • Slavery — The White Man's Burden[12]


  1. ^ "Biographical information". University of North Carolina Libraries. Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  2. ^ "Dr. William K. Scarborough 1933 - 2020". Hattiesburg American. Retrieved 11 August 2021.
  3. ^ a b "HR 123". Mississippi Legislature. 2009. Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  4. ^ a b "Governor of Mississippi Backs Private Schools". New York Times. January 4, 1970. Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  5. ^ a b Porch, Scott (June 23, 2014). "When the Right to Vote Wasn't a Right". Daily Beast. Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  6. ^ "South Carolina Secession". CSPAN3. December 4, 2010. Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  7. ^ "William Kauffman Scarborough Papers, 1951-2015". Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  8. ^ "Former USM history professor William Scarborough, expert on Old South, dies at 87".
  9. ^ Scarborough, William K. (July 28, 2017). "Heritage, not hate. Let's keep the state flag". Clarion Ledger. Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  10. ^ Scarborough, William K (1966). Overseer: Plantation Management in the Old South. University of Georgia Press. ISBN 9780820307329. Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  11. ^ Scarborough, William K. (April 1, 2006). Masters of the Big House: Elite Slaveholders of the Mid-Nineteenth-Century South. LSU Press. ISBN 9780807128824. Retrieved 9 December 2017.
  12. ^ Scarborough, William K. (1976). "Slavery — The White Man's Burden". In Owens, Harry P. (ed.). Perspectives and Irony in American Slavery. University Press of Mississippi. pp. 102–136. ISBN 0-87805-074-4. Retrieved 9 December 2017.