Wharton, Lawrence Hay (1892–1937)

By: DeWitt C. Reddick

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: September 1, 1995

Lawrence Hay Wharton, Presbyterian pastor, son of Lucy (Taliaferro) and Turner A. Wharton, was born at Steel Creek, North Carolina, on August 1, 1892. He graduated from Austin College in 1911 and from the Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary in 1914. He married Alice Borchers in 1915; they had two daughters. Wharton's first pastorate was at Laredo, Texas, where he served from 1914 until 1921, except for a year with the YMCA in France during World War I. In 1922 he became pastor of the University Presbyterian Church in Austin, where he remained until his death. He was awarded an honorary doctor of divinity degree jointly by Austin College and Daniel Baker College in 1927. From 1926 until his death Wharton directed the Presbyterian youth encampment at Kerrville each summer. His understanding of students and their problems brought him national recognition in religious circles. His ideas for a student church influenced similar programs throughout the country. He contributed numerous articles to religious magazines. In 1943 a collection of his sermons for young people was published under the title Guideposts for Youth. He died on January 13, 1937.

Austin American, January 13, 1937. Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.
  • Religion
  • Presbyterian

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

DeWitt C. Reddick, “Wharton, Lawrence Hay,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed June 30, 2022, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/wharton-lawrence-hay.

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

September 1, 1995