From the History of the Antioch Presbyterian Church, Highway 417, Woodruff, South Carolina, Spartanburg County, Cashville Community, 1843-1996:
Mary Anderson Leonard received her education from the Reidville Female College, Mount Holyoke, the University of South Carolina, and the University of Chicago. Following graduation, she filled the Chair of History in colleges throughout the South. Some have recalled that she and Dr. Johnson organized Winthrop College (now University) with seventeen students.* From 1899 to 1906, she was professor of History at Winthrop, and in her later years, she received the Ph.D. degree from the University of South Carolina. As a charter member of the Reidville Women’s Club, she was remembered in the minutes as “cherishing high ideals in herself and others. She was a woman of independence in thought and action and was recognized for the brilliancy of her mind.”
* Editor’s Note: It may be that Mary Anderson Leonard is here being confused with Mary Hall Leonard (1847-1921). Click here for more information on Mary Hall Leonard. While there is no reason to dispute the fact of Mary Anderson Leonard’s tenure at Winthrop College from 1899 to 1906 (and this fact is corroborated by the excerpted biographical note below), it must be noted that there are two significant “Mary Leonards” in the history of the institution.
From the book, William Anderson and Rebecca Denny and their descendants, 1706-1914 by Anderson Memorial Association (Foreword by Mary Anderson Leonard), 1913:
Mary Anderson Leonard was graduated from the Reidville Female College in 1885; studied at Mount Holyoke in 1887-1888; at the South Carolina College in 1897-1898; and was graduated in 1904 from the University of Chicago, where she had specialized in history, politics, and economics. She has had the privilege of teaching nearly two thousand young people in her twenty-one years’ active service – a part of this time in the capitals of West Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina and Georgia. From 1899 to 1906 she was the head of the department of history, civics and economics in Winthrop College, S.C.