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George Hendrick: Jones scholar, first James Jones Literary Society president

George Hendrick, a prolific scholar of 19th and 20th century literature and history and the first president of the James Jones Literary Society, passed away June 18, 2021, at the age of 92. Dr. Hendrick was a prolific scholar of 19th and 20th century literature and history, publishing more than 30 books and articles. He was a respected teacher and mentor to his many university students.

After receiving his Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin, Dr. Hendrick held the chair in American Studies at J.W. Goethe University in Frankfurt/Main, Germany from 1960-1965. He then joined the faculty of the University of Illinois, first in Chicago and then in Urbana-Champaign, where he served as Head of the English Department, Associate Dean of the Graduate College, and Curator of Manuscripts in the Rare Book and Manuscripts Library.

He was also the author, co-author, editor, co-editor, and translator of well books and publications, including several works on Thoreau and the Transcendental Movement, several editions on Carl Sandburg based on unpublished manuscripts in the University of Illinois Library, books about the novelist James Jones (many of his papers are collected at the Harry Ransom Center), books on African American History, works on Southern writers, including an early study of Katherine Anne Porter and a book on the pioneer Illinois physician Dr. Hiriam Rutherford, with a remarkable account of Rutherford and Lincoln as opponents in a slavery case. 

Dr. Hendrick’s most recent publications were on Mark Twain and on H.S. Wells and the American Photographer Alvin Langdon Coburn.

Dr. Hendrick’s ashes will be buried along with those of his late wife, Willene Lowery Hendrick, at a family plot in Texas. He did not leave any directives about charitable donations in his honor. One option is a special fund established, in part, by the James Jones Literary Society as the Creative Writing Prize in Liberal Arts Honors at the University of Texas at Austin.

Gifts by check can be sent to the following address. Please note on the check that the gift is intended for the Creative Writing Prize in Liberal Arts Honors and mail it to:

            The University of Texas at Austin

            University Development Office

            PO Box 7458

            Austin, TX 78713

Should people like to make a gift online, they can do so at www.giving.utexas.edu and also include a notation that their contribution is intended for the Creative Writing Prize in Liberal Arts Honors.

2 thoughts on “George Hendrick: Jones scholar, first James Jones Literary Society president”

  1. What a wonderful opportunity to honor a great scholar and writer, remember an outstanding novelist and give students the opportunity to go forward with the knowledge that these outstanding writers left something to inspire work in the future that will help the world understand and survive the trials and tribulations we all face on the journey through life.

    Liked by 1 person

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