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This article is from the Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, 6 volumes, edited by William S. Powell. Copyright ©1979-1996 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

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Jones, William Henry

by H. G. Jones, 1988

23 Sept. 1883–4 Jan. 1963

William Henry Jones, educator, was born in Caswell County, the son of Thaddeus Cornelius and Rebecca Jane Roberts Jones. He attended rural schools in Caswell and Rockingham counties and was graduated in 1911 from The University of North Carolina, where in his senior year he was editor of The Daily Tar Heel, a member of the Golden Fleece, and a student assistant to Librarian Louis Round Wilson. Jones taught school in Caswell, Sampson, Buncombe, Durham, Washington, Robeson, and Pitt counties, and was principal of high schools in South Hill and Charlotte Courthouse, Va.Image of William Henry Jones, from University of North Carolina at Chapel hill's yearbook Yackety yack, [p. 44], published 1911 by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Presented on digital nc. In 1922 he became principal of Biltmore School near Asheville. Five years later he and Buncombe County Schools Superintendent A. C. Reynolds established a tuition-free county junior college at Biltmore, and Jones was promoted to superintendent of Biltmore Schools, encompassing the junior college, high school, and elementary school.

Biltmore Junior College's enrollment reached about three hundred students before the depression forced the charging of tuition. After Reynolds's retirement as county superintendent, Jones relinquished supervision of the junior college and Reynolds became its president. Later Biltmore was merged with Asheville College to form Asheville-Biltmore College, the predecessor of the University of North Carolina at Asheville. In 1934 Jones became district supervisor of the Adult Education Program of the Emergency Relief Administration (later Works Progress Administration) with the office in Chapel Hill, and the following year he was appointed assistant state director of the program in Raleigh. For nine months preceding the termination of the program in 1943, Jones was state supervisor of the Adult Education Program. From 1945 until his retirement in 1960, he was employed by the Hospital Savings Association in Chapel Hill.

Jones was an avid gardener and an active Methodist layman. In 1916 he married Edna Lynch of Fairview, and they had three children: George Thaddeus (m. Mary Peres), Myra (m. Russell B. Davis and, after his death, Stewart Rogers), and Louise (m. Allen McCain Garrett). Jones died in Riverdale, Md., and his ashes were returned to North Carolina for burial in the old Chapel Hill Cemetery. His widow died in a fire at the Methodist Home, Durham, in 1976.


Asheville Citizen-Times, 16 Dec. 1962.

Chapel Hill Weekly, 9 Jan. 1963.

"William Henry Jones," The Heritage of Caswell County (1985).

William Henry Jones Papers (North Carolina State Archives, Raleigh).

Statesville Record & Landmark, 23 Dec. 1983.

Additional Resources:

Jones, William Henry. Yackety Yack 1911. [Chapel Hill, Publications Board of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill]. 1911. (accessed June 5, 2014).

Image Credits:

Jones, William Henry. Yackety Yack 1911. [Chapel Hill, Publications Board of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill]. 1911. (accessed June 5, 2014).