Baptist History Homepage
      William R. Rothwell, D.D., was born in Garrard Co., Ky. Sept. 2, 1831. He was the son of the late Dr. John Rothwell of Callaway Co., Mo. His mother was China Renfro. Both of his parents were of Virginian birth and British descent. His father's family removed to Missouri after his birth in 1831. He graduated in 1854 at the University of Missouri with the first honors in a class of ten members. In 1874 his alma mater, in honorable recognition of his distinction as a man of letters, conferred upon him the degree of D.D.

      Every moment of Dr. Rothwell's time since his graduation has been one of intellectual activity and usefulness. From 1854 to 1856 he was principal of Elm Ridge Academy. He was the first president of the Baptist Female College at Columbia. Mo. (now known as Stephens College), and after one year of service there he was elected to succeed the Rev. Wm. Thompson. LL.D., as president of Mount Pleasant College. In 1860 he was ordained to the ministry of the gospel, and was successively pastor of the Baptist churches at Huntsville and Keytesville. Mo. During the years 1871 and 1872 he was corresponding secretary of the Baptist General Association of Missouri, in which position he acquitted himself with marked ability. His letters and communications while

corresponding secretary are noted as being among the must graceful and forcible that have advocated the interests of that body. In 1872, Dr. Roth well was unanimously elected Professor of Theology and Moral Philosophy in William Jewell College, a place which he still fills with great distinction.

      In his eight years of professorship of Theology he has instructed for a longer or shorter time 150 young ministers of Missouri and the West. Since 1874 he has been chairman of the faculty.

      Dr. Rothwell is in the prime of life and mental vigor. He is one of the most modest and unassuming of men, but his very high sense of duty always impels him to the front whenever principle or honor calls. He is a "scholar and a ripe one," of elegant culture, and a man of liberal, expansive views. Probablv no man in the State stands higher in the love and confidence of his denomination.


[From The Baptist Encyclopedia, 1881, reprint 1984, pp. 1011-1012. Scanned and formatted by Jim Duvall.]

More Baptist Bios
Baptist History Homepage