Political Science has been part of the college's curriculum since its founding in 1837. Along with a senior level course in political economy, aspects of what would become the discipline of political science were a part of the moral philosophy courses. The first course that focused specifically on political science rather than economics appeared in 1910. The Woodrow Wilson Professorship of Economics and Political Science was established in 1920. It was endowed by the Presbyterian Church of Gastonia; Archibald Currie held the professorship from 1920 to 1942.
While a report showed that 181 students took political science classes in 1936, the department had only one faculty member until 1963. The college began offering a Washington semester in conjunction with American University in 1954. By the 1980s, the program was being conducted by Davidson Political Science faculty. By 2012, the department had grown to 14 faculty and was one of the departments with the highest number of majors.
Taken from the College Archives