McWatty Russell, president of Westminster College, a noted
educational institution which is located at New Wilmington, Lawrence
County, Pennsylvania, was born on his father's farm in Mercer County,
Pennsylvania, April 6, 1858. He is a son of John T. and Jane
Dr. Russell comes of
Scotch-Irish ancestry. He was reared to manhood on the home farm,
attending the district schools of the neighborhood and later enjoyed
better advantages in the Blacktown Academy and the Mercer High School.
In the fall of 1875 he entered Westminster College and in 1880 was
graduated with the degree of A. B. During the year of 1880-1 he taught
in the academy at McKeesport, and in the winter of 1882 he entered the
Allegheny Theological Seminary and was graduated in April, 1884. In the
following July he took charge of the First United Presbyterian Church at
Caledonia, N. Y., where he remained for six years and three months. In
1896 he accepted a call from the Sixth United Presbyterian Church of
Pittsburg, Pa., where he continued ministerial work until April 1, 1906.
When Dr. Russell first located in Pittsburg he was elected a member of
the board of control of Westminster College and has been closely
identified with its interests ever since his student days. In 1906 Dr.
Russell was invited to become the president of this institution and his
name and services have added luster to an educational center that has
long been a point of pride to citizens of Western Pennsylvania.
Dr. Russell was married,
in 1888, to Caroline B. Keech , who is a daughter of Elisha and Hannah
(Swan) Keech. Mrs. Russell was born at Brooklyn, N. Y. She has been most
intimately associated with her husband in both church and college work.
They have three children: Robert McWatty, Jane Walker, and Donald.
Century History of New Castle and Lawrence County, 1908, page 394