John Crumpton Hardy, college president, was born in Newton, Mississippi, on December 24, 1864, the son of John D. and Martha Hardy. He graduated from Mississippi College in 1889 and took a law degree at Millsap Law School and an M.A. at Mississippi College in 1898. He also did graduate work at Cornell University and the University of Chicago. Hardy served as superintendent of the Jackson, Mississippi, schools for nine years, then as president of Mississippi Agricultural and Mechanical College for thirteen. In 1912 he became president of Baylor Female College (now the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor) at Belton, Texas, where he remained until shortly before his death. During his twenty-five-year tenure the student body grew, seven major buildings were erected, and the school's curriculum was broadened. Hardy was also president, at different times, of the Law Enforcement League of Texas, of the board of trustees of the Texas School for the Blind, and of the Baptist General Convention of Texas. He was married to Kate Whitefield of Mississippi in 1900; the couple had five children. He died at Belton on October 30, 1938, and was buried in North Belton Cemetery.