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William A. Alexander Papers

William A. Alexander Papers

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Descriptive Summary

Title: William A. Alexander Papers
Identification: MS145
Date: 1918-1964 (bulk 1922-1958)
Size/Quantity: 0.8 linear feet (two document cases)
Language: This collection is written in English.
Creator: Alexander, William A., (William Anderson), 1889-1950
Repository: Archives & Records Management, Library, Georgia Institute of Technology
Abstract:William A. Alexander graduated from Georgia Tech in 1912, in Civil Engineering. After graduation, he became a mathematics instructor and assistant football coach for Tech under John Heisman. In 1920, he assumed the title of head football coach until his retirement in 1944, but continued his duties as Athletic Director until his death in 1950. Alexander is remembered for his numerous wins as head football coach and taking his team to four major football bowl games. These papers include correspondences, office files, administration files, and newspaper clippings documenting his activities at Tech.

Biographical/Historical Note

William Anderson Alexander was born June 6, 1889, in Mud River Kentucky, the son of Luther and Gertrude Anderson. He entered Tech in 1906, as an Apprentice and graduated in 1912, with a B. S. degree in Civil Engineering. After graduation, he became a mathematics instructor and assistant football coach under John Heisman. In 1918, he was called to serve in World War I, but in 1919, Alexander returned to Tech to assume the position of head football coach. He would hold this position until his retirement in 1944, but continued on as Athletic Director until his death in 1950.

Throughout his lifetime, Alexander won numerous awards for his team's accomplishments and his attitude towards his athletes. He was known as a tough coach, but a man who was well respected by athletes and faculty members. For instance, he was awarded Coach of the Year in 1942, and was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame posthumously in 1950. During his career at Tech, he won 133 games, had 95 losses, and eight tied games. Alexander was also the first football coach to take his team to four football bowl games.

Alexander married Marie MacIntyre Scott on June 1, 1935, in Tallulah Falls, Georgia. They had no children, but Alexander helped raise Marie's daughter, Rebekah Scott (Mrs. Morris Marion Bryan, Jr.), from a former marriage. William Alexander died on April 23, 1950.

Scope and Content Note

The William A. Alexander Papers include biographical information, administrative and office files, publications, newspaper clippings, and information on family members and other individuals. The bulk of the collection is composed of correspondence, located within the second series, to Alexander while he was head football coach at Tech. Newspaper clippings also make up a large portion of the collection, touching on subjects such as Alexander's marriage to Marie MacIntrye Scott in 1923, his numerous football victories as head coach at Tech, and his death in 1950. Due to the poor quality of the original newspaper clippings and the inability of the copier to reproduce clear copies, the original clippings remain within the collection. Also included are several of Alexander's personal items, such as awards and certificates from his college days at Tech.


The William A. Alexander Papers have been arranged into five series.

SERIES 1. Biographical and Personal Information, 1718-1958 [Box 1]

SERIES 2. Office Files, 1920-1950 [Box 1]

SERIES 3. Publications and Programs, 1913-1964 [Box 1]

SERIES 4. Family Members and Individual Information, 1868-1950 [Box 1]

SERIES 5. Newspaper Clippings, 1927-1964 [Box 2]

Index Terms

Brittain, M. L., (Marion Luther), 1866-1953
Georgia Institute of Technology. Alexander Memorial Coliseum.
Georgia Institute of Technology. Football.
Georgia Institute of Technology. Sports.
Heisman, John W., (John William), 1869-1936

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Please cite William A. Alexander Papers (MS145), Archives, Library and Information Center, Georgia Institute of Technology.


This collection was donated by Rebekah Scott Bryan, stepdaughter of William A. Alexander, in 2001. (Accession #2001.067).

Processing Information

Jody Lloyd processed these papers in 2001.

Revisions to Finding Aid

February 2006:
  • Finding aid converted from Encoded Archival Description Version 1.0 to Version 2002. April 2010: Finding aid imported into Archivists' Toolkit.

  • Restrictions

    Restrictions: Access


    Restrictions: Use

    Permission to publish materials from this collection must be obtained from the Head of Archives and Special Collections

    Separated Material

    Photographs have been removed and cataloged as VAM145, William A. Alexander Photograph Collection.

    Other Finding Aids

    A print copy of this finding aid is available in the Georgia Tech Archives reading room.

    Container List

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    Series 1: Biographical and Personal Information, 1918-1958



    11Biographical Information, 1918-1950
    12Wedding Congratulatories, 1935
    13Personal Correspondence and Files, 1935-1948
    14Tax Returns, 1932-1938
    15Real Estate Taxes and Banking/Insurance Receipts, 1937-1941
    16Certificates, 1910-1938
    17Resolution, undated
    18Dedication/Memorial Program, 1950
    19Dedication Ceremonies for Alexander Memorial Coliseum and Alexander Memorial Plaque, 1956-1958

    Series 2: Office Files, 1920-1950



    110Correspondence, 1920-1950
    111Correspondence, 1920-1950
    112Correspondence, 1920-1950
    113Correspondence, 1920-1950
    114Correspondence, 1920-1950
    115Correspondence, undated
    116Memoranda, Notices, etc., 1922

    Series 3: Publications and Programs, 1913-1964



    117Georgia Tech Printed Materials, 1913-1956
    118Programs, 1937-1964
    119Magazines and Journals, 1930-1950

    Series 4: Family Members and Individuals Information, 1868-1950



    120Alexander, Benejah Gray, 1868
    121Alexander, Gertrude Anderson, 1931-1937
    122Alexander, Marie MacIntrye Scott (Mrs. William A. Anderson), 1950
    123Bryan, Rebekah Scott (Mrs. Morris Bryan, Jr.), 1949
    124Hallsworth, Mrs. H. P. and George H. Holliday, 1931-1933

    Series 5: Newspaper Clippings, 1927-1964



    21Newspaper Clippings, 1920s-1930s
    22Newspaper Clippings, 1940s
    23Newspaper Clippings, 1950s
    24Newspaper Clippings, 1960s
    25Newspaper Clippings, no titles or dates