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Ancil Gatliff Collection

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: BCA 0080 SAA 080

Scope and Contents

The collection includes extensive correspondence (especially with J.L. Boyd of Procter Coal Company), stories and biographical information about Dr. Gatliff, a picture of his wife, and other family information. There are also miscellaneous records regarding Williamsburg Institute/Cumberland College.


  • created: 1887-1988
  • Other: Date acquired: 06/25/1996


Conditions Governing Access

Records can be accessed through the Reading Room, Berea College Special Collections and Archives, Hutchins Library, Berea College.

Conditions Governing Use

Federal copyright regulations apply to all other materials. Please cite all materials.


8.00 ms_boxes

Language of Materials



Dr. Ancil Gatliff was born January 2, 1850 on a farm in Whitley County near Watts Creek.  His parents were John Speed Gatliff and Luvisa Jones Gatliff.  He was educated in the county schools and secured his medical training at the Louisville Medical College.  On October 26, 1876 he journeyed by horseback to Bell County where he married Miss Florida Ellen Moss.  They had five children; Ruby Gatliff Archer, Pearl Gatliff Perkins, Una Gatliff Mahan, J.B. Gatliff, and E.M. Gatliff.      Dr. Gatliff was founder, first president, and largest contributor of the Kentucky Baptist Educational Society, giving 4,000 acres of land to the organization at the General Association of Kentucky Baptists in Richmond, Kentucky in 1906. In 1915, Kentucky Baptists in session at Jellico, representing 240,000 members, called him to serve as moderator which was the chief place of honor and leadership of the denomination. Dr. Gatliff was an outstanding physician, and was especially successful in treating pneumonia.  On several occasions the Democrats of the state would have given him, without opposition, the gubernatorial nomination, but he declined, choosing rather to stay in the ranks and serve. Gatliff had a deep love and devotion to Cumberland College.  It has been estimated that his financial aid to the college approximated $100,000.  He built the Gatliff Gymnasium in 1911, which now has become the library.  He not only loved the material plant of the college, but he loved the students and helped many financially through school. At the time of his death on October 14, 1918, Gatliff was the president of the Southern Coal and Coke Company, Southern Mining Company, Gatliff Coal Company, and High Splint Coal Company.  He was also president of the Bank of Williamsburg, and Chairman of the Board of Trustees at Cumberland College.

Arrangement Note

The collection is arranged in series as follows:

Series 1: Personal/Biographical

Series 2: Williamsburg Institute/Cumberland College

Series 3: Boyd Correspondence

Series 4: Gatliff Correspondence

Source of Acquisition

Chester Young

Method of Acquisition

The papers of Dr. Ancil Gatliff were placed in the Berea College Southern Appalachian Archives as a gift by Chester Young on June 25, 1996 and were open for research in June of 2000.

Other Descriptive Information

BCA 0080 SAA 080

Processing Information

The collection was open for research in June of 2000.

Archon Finding Aid Title
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Berea College Special Collections and Archives Repository

Hutchins Library
100 Campus Drive
Berea Kentucky 40404 US