In the Rhea County Courthouse in 1925, he famously stood up for biblical creationism and fought against the teaching of evolution in public schools. His victory over John Scopes was viewed as a win for Christianity.

But what many people don't know is that William Jennings Bryan didn't necessarily believe in a literal interpretation of Genesis. His descendants say he might not be happy to know that the current administration of the college founded in his name is forcing professors to sign a document embracing a narrow view of how God created mankind.

"I can't imagine that he would accept this stance at all," said Kent Owen, a great-grandson of Bryan. "He was very forward-thinking. Some of the things he was putting out there were so far ahead of his time."

Bryan, called "the Great Commoner," was a widely known Democratic politician. He served as a congressman, as U.S. secretary of state and launched three failed bids for the White House. He was a deeply religious populist who pushed for women's suffrage and advocated for the addition of a federal income tax.

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