Aerial view of campus with Williamsport, the Susquehanna River and Bald Eagle Mountain as a backdrop

Annual Ewing Lecture to focus on freedom

Annual Ewing Lecture to focus on freedom

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The Lycoming College History Department will welcome Dr. Edward Ayers, president of the University of Richmond, for the 40th annual Ewing Lecture. His presentation, “Where Did Freedom Come From,” is scheduled for Tuesday, April 2, at 7:30 p.m. in the Mary Lindsay Welch Honors Hall. The event is free and open to the public.

Ayers is one of the country’s preeminent historians of the American Civil War and the New South. He taught at the University of Virginia for more than 20 years, where he was recognized for outstanding teaching by the Carnegie Foundation, the state of Virginia and the American Historical Association. He later served as dean of the College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. He has been Richmond’s president since 2007.

He is the author or editor of 10 books, one of which, In the Presence of Mine Enemies: War in the Heart of America, 1859-1863, won the prestigious Bancroft Prize awarded by the American Historical Association.

Ayers earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville in 1974 and a Ph.D. from Yale University in American studies in 1980. He joined the faculty at Virginia in fall 1980. In 1993, he was named the Hugh P. Kelly Professor of History at UVA, and in 2001 became the Buckner W. Clay Dean of the College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

His presentation will mark the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation.

The Ewing Lecture Series was established in 1973 when Robert H. Ewing, for whom it is named, retired after 27 years of teaching at Lycoming. His life was characterized by a deep religious faith, a passion for history and a strong devotion to a liberal arts education. These qualities touched the lives of all who came in contact with him and led his many friends to contribute to the Ewing fund to establish this series.

Lycoming College is a four-year, residential liberal arts and sciences school dedicated to the undergraduate education of 1,400 students. Its rigorous academic program, vibrant residential community and supportive faculty foster successful student outcomes. Lycoming offers 36 academic majors and is recognized as a Tier 1 institution by U.S. News & World Report. Founded in 1812 and located near the banks of the Susquehanna River in Williamsport, Pa., Lycoming is one of the 50 oldest colleges in the nation. For more information, visit

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