Biographical / Historical
Frank Williams Prescott (1896-1981) was a professor of Government, History, and Political Science at the University of Chattanooga from 1928 until his retirement in 1967. He was the Adolph Ochs Professor of Government at the university, as well as the head of the Political Science department until 1962. Dr. Prescott was also a delegate in four Tennessee Constitutional Conventions, 1953, 1959, 1965, and 1971. He was considered an expert in the makeup of government and the application of its powers. He was involved with local and state government, and served as a member of the committee which drafted the county council-manager charter for Hamilton County in the early 1940s. He was also executive secretary of the Tennessee State Tax Commission, and on the Chattanooga Citizen’s Committee on the Merit System for City Employees. Early in his days in Chattanooga he succeeded in getting a road tax removed from the state constitution, in which he suspected graft was involved. He founded the Southern Political Science Association and was a member of the American Political Science Association. He was also a correspondent of the National Civic Review and the author of An Outline of Europe since 1815. At first Dr. Prescott was a liberal but later became a Republican.
Prescott was originally from New Hampshire and graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 1921, with a graduate degree in 1925. He taught high school history briefly in Wichita, Kansas in 1921-22, then taught at the University of Wisconsin from 1922-1925, and then taught at Tulane University in New Orleans from 1925-28 before coming to Chattanooga. He was married to Marjorie Bean Prescott and they had a son and a daughter.