Link to the Pathways to Diversity homepage mobile menu
Furman University | Text

State BSU Covention Meets in Greenville: Delegates Pass Resolution on Integration

An article appearing in Furman's student newspaper, The Paladin, dated November 11, 1961. The article details a resolution, introduced, and approved at the Annual South Carolina Baptist Student Union Convention, suggesting that the Trustees of the institutions of the South Carolina Baptist Convention 'give careful study to this responsibilty to open the door' to qualified students regardless of race.

State BSU Convention Meets In Greenville Delegates Pass Resolutions On Integration -- Approximately 400 students from colleges in the state attended the Annual South Carolina Baptist Student Union Convention held in Greenville Dec. 1-3. The most decisive action taken by the students was to ask Trustees of state Baptist Institutions to take a careful study of the problems of integration. A resolution introduced by Miss Jo Johnson of Winthrop College said, ". . . whereas we, the Baptist students present at the 37th Annual South Carolina Baptist Student Union Convention feel that it is the responsibility of Christian institutions to give courageous leadership in times of social change, therefore, be it resolved that we suggest that the Trustees of the institutions of our convention (the S. C. Baptist Convention) give careful study to this responsibility to open the door of knowledge and service to qualified students, regardless of race or creed." This resolution was adopted by a 117 to 25 majority. A second action on this same issue proposed by Gene Platt of the University of South Carolina said, "We, the Baptist Student Union of South Carolina Baptist institutions of higher learning . . . should accept all qualified applicants regardless of race." The stand taken by the Baptist students on this issue was in complete contrast to the action which took place at the S.C. Baptist Convention held several weeks ago. A similar resolution was proposed during a general business of the Baptist Convention meeting held on the Furman campus, and a large large majority showed disfavor to the idea. Principal speakers for the three day-convention which took place at the First Baptist Church were Mr. Robert S. Denny, Associate General Secretary of The Baptist World Alliance; the Rev. Jack Hoffsinger, Pastor of Knollwood Baptist Church of Winston-Salem, N. C.; and Dr. T. B. Matson, Professor of Christian Ethics at the South Western Theological Baptist Seminary.