Great Scots

Scottish Name List


Photo Journal


Visit our Blog



Woodrow Wilson

U. S. President and Recipient of Nobel Peace Prize.

Woodrow Wilson, 28th President of the United States, was born December 18, 1856, in Staunton, Virginia. His paternal grandfather was an Ulster Scot who came to the U.S. in 1807. His maternal grandfather, Thomas Woodrow, was a Presbyterian minister who was graduated from the University of Glasgow. Woodrow Wilson was educated at Princeton University. He took graduate work in history and government at Johns Hopkins University where he received his Ph.D degree. He returned to Princeton to teach. Later he served as president of Princeton. He left the university to run for governor of New Jersey as a reform candidate. He gained national prominence as governor. In 1912 he was nominated and elected U.S. President. In 1913 he signed into law the Federal Income Tax Act as well as the Federal Reserve Act. He also was instrumental in setting up the Federal Trade Commission. His efforts at domestic reform were overshadowed by foreign unrest, mainly anarchy in Mexico and World War I. When the U.S. entered the war, he emphasized that it was a crusade for freedom. This hardened the nationís attitude and strengthened the resolve to win. He insisted that the League of Nations was an essential part of the peace settlement. But the demands of the victors at the expense of the defeated and political opposition at home were more than he could cope with. His health failed and he retired to private life. In spite of his failure to get the U.S. to accept the importance of the League of Nations, his place in history as a force for good was assured. Wilson was awarded the Novel Peace Prize in 1920. He died in his sleep in Washington on February 3, 1924.

Wayne Rethford, President Emeritus
Illinois Saint Andrew Society
Scottish-American History Club
2800 Des Plaines Avenue
North Riverside, IL 60546