Hugh Bailey

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Hugh Bailey

Hugh C. Bailey (born July 2, 1929 in Berry, Fayette County; died October 5, 2012 in Valdosta, Georgia) was a historian, dean of Samford University's Howard College of Arts & Sciences, and president of Valdosta State University in Georgia.

Bailey was the son of Coleman Costello and Susie Jane Jenkins Bailey. He graduated in 1946 from Fayette County's Berry High School and earned his bachelor of arts at Howard College in 1950. He went on to earn his master of arts and PhD from the University of Alabama in 1951 and 1954, by which time he had joined the faculty at Howard as a political science instructor. He earned promotions to associate professor, and professor, then served as head of the Department of History, and as chairperson of the Division of Social Sciences. Bailey was appointed dean of the College of Arts & Sciences in 1970.

He left in 1975 to become vice president and dean of faculties at Francis Marion University in Florence, South Carolina. In 1978 he accepted the presidency of Valdosta State College, retiring in 2001. During his tenure as president, Valdosta State doubled its enrollment and became a regional university. The college's Hugh C. Bailey Science Center, opened in 2001, was named in his honor.

Bailey and his wife, the former Joan Seever, had two daughters, Debra Jane and Laura Joan. Bailey died in 2012 and was survived by his wife and daughters and four grandchildren. His funeral services were held at Christ Episcopal Church in Valdosta and his ashes were interred in its Urn Garden.


  • Bailey, Hugh C. (1964) John Williams Walker: A Study in the Political, Social, and Cultural Life of the Old Southwest. University of Alabama Press
  • Bailey, Hugh C. (1965) Hinton Rowan Helper: Abolitionist-Racist. University of Alabama Press
  • Bailey, Hugh C. (1968) Edgar Gardner Murphy: Gentle Progressive. University of Miami Press
  • Bailey, Hugh C. (1969) Liberalism in the New South: Southern Social Reformers and the Progressive Movement. University of Miami Press ISBN 067508749X
  • Bailey, Hugh C. ( ) America: The Framing of a Nation.


  • "Samford Mourns Former History Professor, Chair, Dean Hugh C. Bailey." (October 8, 2012) Samford University
  • "Hugh C. Bailey" obituary (October 8, 2012) The Birmingham News