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Department of English Language and Literature

Michael Bryant Montgomery

May 15, 1950 - July 24, 2019
In Memoriam
Michael Montgomery

The department mourns the passing of our long-time colleague Michael Bryant Montgomery. Michael was a Distinguished Professor Emeritus of English and Linguistics at the University of South Carolina, where he taught from 1981-1999, and a renowned expert on Southern American English, Appalachian English, Ulster Scots, and the Scots-Irish influence on American English. He was the author of numerous scholarly articles and books. These included From Ulster to America: The Scotch-Irish History of American English (2017); the Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English (co-author, 2004); Language - Volume 5 of the New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture (co-editor, 2007); and the Dictionary of Southern Appalachian English (co-author, 2005). He was co-host of a website on Appalachian English, at: His honors included the 2004 Wilma Dykeman Award for Historical Writing from the East Tennessee Historical Society, the Cratis D. Williams/James Brown Award from the Appalachian Studies Association, one of the Top 100 Most influential People in the Great Smoky Mountains History by the Great Smoky Mountains Association, and a Grammy nomination for the music CD “Old Time Smoky Mountain Music.” He was Past President of the American Dialect Society, the Southeastern Conference on Linguistics, and the Ulster Scots Language Society.

Linguistics Program Memorials

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