James Presley and John Scopes co-Authored Center of the Storm Memoirs of John T. Scopes

James Presley and John Scopes co-Authored Center of the Storm Memoirs of John T. Scopes

James Presley Video Presentation at the famous Rhea Courthouse where John Thomas Scopes was convicted of violating the Butler Act in July 1925

Each year, on the anniversary of the famous 1925 Scopes trial, the people of Dayton celebrate with the Scopes Festival. One regular attendee of the festival is Randy Moore, Professor of Biology at the University of Minnesota. Randy began making frequent yearly visits to Dayton 25 years ago, researching the people and events of that famous trial in the summer of 1925. As preparations were being made for the Scopes Festival in 2016, Randy organized a reunion of people who had connections to John Thomas Scopes. Those he invited were James Presley who in 1967 along with Scopes authored the book “Center of the Storm Memoirs of John T. Scopes”, Jerry Tompkins author of “D-Days at Dayton” and Susan Epperson (Epperson vs Arkansas, 1968) During their visit they were given a tour of the downtown area seeing the sites related to the events of that week in 1925 that captured the world’s attention. During their visit to the festival, they each spoke individually, sharing stories of their relationship to John Scopes. This was truly an honor to have these guests in town for the Scopes Festival and to be able to learn from them firsthand knowledge of the role they played concerning this historical event.

Below, you can see the video presentation from July 2016 given by James Presley at the Rhea County Courthouse.


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Published byDean

Born and raised in Dayton Tennessee, I have served in various public service positions in the past. I have a great interest in the History of our town. This site is a way for me to share some of the great history of the area.

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