Clemson Removes John C Calhoun’s Name From Honors College

Clemson University is removing the name of a former slave owner and secessionist from its campus. On Friday, June 12, the Clemson University Board of Trustees voted to remove the name of John C. Calhoun from the university’s Honors College, according to the Greenville News.

All 13 trustees voted in favor and five emeritus trustees supported the decision.

“Clemson must also recognize that there are central figures in Clemson’s history whose beliefs and actions do not represent the university’s core values … and as our values guide us, we are listening,” Board of Trustees Chairman Smythe McKissick said.

In addition to removing John C. Calhoun’s name, the university has requested state Legislature allow the school to rename Tillman Hall, which was named after Benjamin “Pitchfork” Tillman, a former governor and white supremacist.

Tillman Hall is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

“We feel it important, however, to share our desires and respectfully request the General Assembly grant authority to the Board of Trustees of Clemson University to restore Tillman Hall to its original name of main building called Old Main,” South Carolina Senate Majority Leader Harvey Peeler said.

The university anticipates its request will be considered in 2021.
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