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Zephaniah Swift Moore: Wikis


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Zephaniah Swift Moore (1770–1823) was a U.S. Congregational clergyman and educator. He taught at Dartmouth College during the early 1810s and had a house built in Hanover, N.H. that now serves as the Blunt Alumni Center. He served as the President of Williams College between 1815 and 1821 and the first President of Amherst College between 1821 and 1823. He is most famous for abandoning Williams in order to found Amherst, taking some of the faculty and 15 students with him. Supposedly, he also took portions of the Williams College library with him. Though plausible, this account is unsubstantiated, and was declared false in 1995 by Williams College President Harry C. Payne. Moore died two years after Amherst was founded, and was succeeded by Heman Humphrey, a trustee of Williams College. His departure from Williams established the foundation for the intense Williams-Amherst rivalry that persists unto the present. To this day, he is regarded with a measure of derision on the Williams campus.


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