The William Gilmore Simms Society






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This is the official website of the William Gilmore Simms Society (WGSS).

The purpose of the society is to facilitate the scholarly exchange of ideas about the works and life of William Gilmore Simms, one of nineteenth-century America's foremost poets, novelists, and men of letters. 


News and Notices

2016 Simms Society Biennial Conference Information


DATE: September 23-24, 2016

LOCATION: Clayton State University, Morrow, Georgia




Send abstracts, via e-mail, along with brief (50-100 words) biographies, to Dr. Jeffery Rogers at Please imbed the biographical information in the e-mail, not in an attachment. Questions about the conference and paper submissions can be directed to Dr. Rogers at the same e-mail address.

Graduate and Undergraduate Submissions: We invite paper submssions from graduate and undergraduate students. Cash prizes for the best undergraduate and graduate student papers will be awarded, which include refunds of registration fees. To be considered for awards, complete student papers, not abstracts, must be submitted by April 15, 2016, and students must read papers at the conference to be eligible for prizes or publication.

Conference registration is $125 for academic presenters and others attending the conference, and $50 for students who are presenting. Registration includes an opening reception, a banquet, a program, a one-year membership in the Simms Society, and a copy of The Simms Review.

The William Gilmore Simms Society invites all interested scholars to a conference exploring the future of Simms studies and the literature and intellectual history of the Old South. William Gilmore Simms (1806-1870) was the antebellum South's most prolific writer and one of its best-known public intellectuals as a novelist, poet, critic, and historian. The Simms Society welcomes academics, graduate students, and undergraduates from all disciplines-especially history, literature, philosophy, and political science-to contribute papers on Simms's life and work for this major national conference. While the conference will address Simms and his writing from all perspectives, its special theme is the question of "The City" - its nature, its influence, its place in the culture. Simms is well known as a "pastoral" and "frontier" writer but in so being he cannot but also be speaking to the phenomenon of urban life and what "The City" means socially, politically and humanly speaking. Thus, this conference will be especially interested in any papers that touch upon the phenomenon of "The City" as it is addressed literary output.

Revised papers may be considered for inclusion in The Simms Review, a refereed journal published by the Simms Society. .

Please join us for this outstanding biennial event, September 23-24, 2016, at Clayton State University, which is conveniently located near metropolitan Atlanta.

Scholars are also invited to explore the free resources available, including Simms primary sources, through the Simms Initiatives website at or the website of the William Gilmore Simms Society at


The Simms Digital Initiatives at USC

With the Simms Initiatives, generously funded by the Watson-Brown Foundation and the University of South Carolina Libraries, scholars now have growing access to Simms's writings through both digital and Print on Demand editions. The Initiatives also are compiling as complete a bibliography of Simms's writings as possible. For more on the Simms Digital Initiatives, visit the USC website HERE.

Shared History, an award-winning documentary on the history of black and white families who trace their heritage through Woodlands, has a companion website that provides useful information about Simms and his family. You can find it at


WGSS Constitution and Bylaws

An updated edition of the society's constitution and bylaws can be found HERE.


News and Notes Archive


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Last Updated 11/15