The Faculty History Project documents faculty members who have been associated with the University of Michigan since 1837. Key in this effort is to celebrate the intellectual life of the University. This Faculty History Website is intended as a component of the effort to document the extraordinary academic achievements of Michigan’s faculty in building and sustaining one of the world’s great universities. It provides access to a comprehensive database of information concerning the thousands of faculty members who have served the University of Michigan.
Find out more.

The Bentley Historical Library serves as the official archives for the University.


John R. Williams

1818 - 1829

Delegate from the First District to the Constitutional Convention of 1835; and Delegate from Wayne County to the Second convention of Assent, 1836. Was born in Detroit, Mich., May 4, 1782. He was in trade there from 1802 to 1832, except from 1812 to 1815. He was a Captain of artillery in the War of 1812, and was included in the surrender of General. Hull. He was one of the first trustees of the University of Michigan in 1821, and president of the Bank of Michigan in 1818. He prepared the first charter of Detroit, and was the first Mayor in 1824, also filled that position from 1825-46. He was three years president of the Board of Education; took great interest in military affairs: commanded the territorial troops during the threatened Black Hawk War, and was Senior Major General of the State militia at the time of his death, Oct. 20, 1854.