Advocate: Wake Forest president embraced eugenics movement - Winston-Salem Journal: News

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Advocate: Wake Forest president embraced eugenics movement

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Posted: Monday, December 9, 2002 12:00 am

William Louis Poteat fought for causes ranging from child-labor reform to humane care of the mentally ill. He earned a progressive reputation that blossomed nationwide from his post as the president of Wake Forest College.

Poteat died in 1938, years before the college moved to Winston-Salem and grew into a university, but his name lives on at the school. Wake historians still talk about the legacy of "Billy" Poteat, including how he made a strong case for academic freedom by openly teaching evolution in his biology classes in the 1920s.

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