Reverend William McWhir became headmaster of Sunbury Academy in 1791. He replaced Reverend Reuben Hitchcock, who remained at the school as a teacher. McWhir was a Presbyterian minister, a native of Ireland, graduated from Belfast College, and was licensed to preach by the Presbytery of Belfast. He emigrated to America in 1783, settled in Alexandria, Virginia, and for ten years was principal of an academy of which George Washington was a trustee, and whose stepchildren he taught.
Reverend McWhir raised the standards of Sunbury Academy until it became one of the best schools in Georgia. He married Mary Lapina Baker, widow of Colonel John Baker, and they had no children.
From “Sweet Land of Liberty, A History of Liberty County, Georgia” by Robert Long Groover; Page(s) 23; Used by the permission of the Liberty County Commissioners Office