Requesting of offsite materials will be unavailable December 13-17.

Researchers visiting Rose Library during that time should make requests for offsite materials by 5pm on Wednesday, December 12.

For assistance, please contact us at or 404-727-6887.

James Edward Dickey papers, 1903-1920

Emory University

Emory University Archives

Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library

Atlanta, GA 30322


Permanent link:

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Dickey, James Edward, 1864-1928.
Title: James Edward Dickey papers, 1903-1920
Call Number:Series No. 102
Extent: .25 linear ft. (1 box) and 1 extra-oversized paper folder (XOP)
Abstract:James Edward Dickey, a Methodist pastor and bishop, was a graduate and president of Emory College. The collection includes a few items of correspondence from Dickey's tenure as president of Emory College, speeches delivered by Dickey at Emory Commencement and Baccalaureate services, letters and testimonials related to a fundraising campaign for Allen Memorial Chapel on the Oxford campus, and sermon notes. Prominent persons represented in the collection include Warren A. Candler, Yun Ch'i-ho, and several Methodist bishops.
Language:Materials entirely in English.

Administrative Information

Restrictions on Access

Unrestricted access.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

All requests subject to limitations noted in departmental policies on reproduction.


Gift, 1938, with subsequent additions.


[after identification of item(s)], James Edward Dickey papers, Emory University Archives, Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library, Emory University.


Processed by VJH, August 1977.

Collection Description

Biographical Note

James Edward Dickey (May 11, 1864-April 17, 1928) was born in Jeffersonville, Georgia, the son of James M. Dickey, a Methodist minister, and Ann Elizabeth Thomas Dickey. Dickey's early education took place in Atlanta, Gainesville, and Elberton. He entered Emory College at Oxford, Georgia in 1887 at age twenty-three, having spent time first working for an Atlanta business firm. While at Emory, Dickey was member of Chi Phi social fraternity, president of his graduating class, and an honor graduate, receiving a B.A. degree in 1891. On September 9, 1891, he married Jessie Munroe of Quincy, Florida, who was a graduate of Wesleyan College in Macon, Georgia and a charter member of Alpha Delta Pi social sorority. The couple had six children. Dickey served in two posts on the Emory College faculty until 1899, when he became pastor of Grace Methodist Church in Atlanta.

In 1902, only eleven years after his graduation from Emory, Dickey was chosen president of the school, succeeding C. E. Dowman, a kinsman, in that post. According to family history, Dickey was related to Ignatius Few, Emory's first president, and to six other presidents of the college. Dickey held the position of president longer than any of his predecessors. While at Emory he continued his education, receiving his D.D. degree from Kentucky Wesleyan in 1903 and an honorary LL.D. from Emory in 1915. He taught Bible courses during these years and earned the nickname "King" James Dickey. Under his leadership, marked improvement was seen in the financial standing of the college as well as in its faculty, curriculum, and physical plant. In 1910, he declined nomination to the office of General Secretary of the Board of Education of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. He continued as president until 1915, when his school was incorporated into the new Emory University as the College of Liberal Arts.

From 1915 to 1920, Dickey acted first as pastor of the First Methodist Church of Atlanta and then as Secretary of Education for the North Georgia Conference. In 1921, he became pastor of the First Methodist Church of Griffin, Georgia, and in 1922, he was elevated to the office of bishop of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. In that capacity, he served in two conferences and remained involved in many other activities as well, serving as a member of the Emory University Board of Trustees and as a national officer of Chi Phi fraternity.

Dickey died in 1928. Tribute was paid to Dickey in 1937, when Elam Franklin Dempsey wrote the Life of Bishop Dickey. In 1956, a men's dormitory on the Emory campus at Oxford was dedicated in honor of James Edward Dickey, the last president of old Emory College.

Scope and Content Note

The collection consists of eight miscellaneous letters from the correspondence of James Edward Dickey while he was president of Emory College, including two letters from Yun Ch'i-ho, 1865-1945, and one letter from Warren Akin Candler (Bishop 1857-1941); miscellaneous items, including two letters, written by Jessie Munroe Dickey to Miss Margaret Jemison of the Emory University Library; eight speeches by Dickey delivered at Emory College Baccalaureate and Commencement services while he was president; two letters, one from Oscar Penn Fitzgerald (Bishop, 1829-1911), and one from Charles Betts Galloway (Bishop, 1849-1909), and four testimonials from Eugene Russell Hendrix (Bishop, 1847-1927), Seth Ward (Bishop, 1858-1909), Henry Clay Morrison (Bishop, 1842-1921), and Warren Akin Candler (Bishop, 1857-1941), all concerning the campaign to build the Allen Memorial Chapel (later Allen Memorial United Methodist Church) on the Oxford campus; and approximately 88 separate pages of rough sermon notes dating approximately from 1915 to 1920, when Dickey was preaching actively in Atlanta and Griffin. Also included in the collection is the small clothbound book of envelopes in which Dickey often kept sermon notes.

Arrangement Note

Arranged by material type.

Selected Search Terms

Personal Names

Corporate Names

Geographic Names

Container List

Box Folder Content
XOP1 Certificate of Methodist Church Biship appointment
1 1 Correspondence as President of Emory College, 1907-1909
1 2 Miscellaneous notes, two written by Mrs. James E. Dickey
1 3 Baccalaureate address to the Class of 1903 of Emory College, "The Purple Thread in the Tunic," James E. Dickey
1 4 Baccalaureate address to the Class of 1905 of Emory College, "The Economy of Unselfishness," James E. Dickey
1 5 Baccalaureate address, untitled, 1913?
1 6 Baccalaureate address to the Class of 1915(?) of Emory College "The Altruism of Egoism: The Last Baccalaureate," James E. Dickey
1 7 Baccalaureate Address, "The Value of Time Estimates," James E. Dickey, undated
1 8 Baccalaureate address, untitled, undated
1 9 Baccalaureate address, untitled, undated
1 10 Letters and testimonials about Allen Memorial United Methodist Church
XOP1 Portrait photograph
1 11 Sermon notes
1 12 Letterbook in which sermon notes were kept, undated