Charles Flinn Arrowood, professor and author, son of Robert Sylvanus and Mary Louise (Dickson) Arrowood, was born in Cabarrus County, North Carolina, on November 9, 1887. He received a B.A. degree from Davidson College, North Carolina, in 1909, a B.D. degree from Union Theological Seminary, Virginia, in 1915, a second B.A. degree and an M.A. degree from Rice Institute (now Rice University) in 1918 and 1921, and a Ph.D with honors from the University of Chicago in 1924. Arrowood taught high school at Hemp, North Carolina, in 1909 and was principal of St. Paul's School in North Carolina from 1911 to 1912. He was ordained a Presbyterian minister in 1915 and served until 1920 as pastor of churches in El Campo, Wharton, Pierce, and Houston, Texas.
From 1920 to 1923 he was professor of philosophy and psychology at Southwestern Presbyterian University in Tennessee. He served as assistant professor in philosophy at the University of Chicago in 1923–24. From 1924 to 1928 he worked as an instructor and then assistant professor at Rice Institute. In 1928 he became professor of the history and philosophy of education at the University of Texas. He was a frequent guest professor at several American universities and was appointed by the United States Department of State as a delegate to the Fourth International Conference on Education at Geneva, Switzerland, in 1935. In 1936 he served as chairman of the National Society of College Teachers of Education. Arrowood wrote numerous articles on education, as well as Thomas Jefferson and Education in a Republic (1930) and Theory of Education in the Political Philosophy of Adam Smith (1945). He coauthored two prominent textbooks with Frederick Eby-Development of Modern Education (1934) and The History and Philosophy of Education, Ancient and Medieval (1940). He also edited and translated George Buchanan's The Powers of the Crown in Scotland (1949).
Arrowood was a member of the National Society of College Teachers of Education, the Texas State Teachers Association, the Texas State Historical Association, Phi Beta Kappa, Phi Delta Kappa, Phi Kappa Sigma, and the National Education Association. He received an honorary D.Litt. degree from Davidson College in 1941. He was a Mason and Democrat. He married Flora Kathleen Register on September 2, 1914. He died in Austin on February 6, 1951, and was buried in Clinton, North Carolina.