Throughout his almost fifty-year career in education, William Chandler Bagley (1874-1946) served as an untiring fighter for liberal and professional education as well as the education of teachers. He was both a supporter and a critic of John Dewey and the complex movement known as progressive (i.e. democratic) education. During the 1920s, he insightfully critiqued the intelligence testing movement and its detrimental effects on minority children. At the end of his long career, he became known as the founder of «essentialism», a movement in educational thought that he and others sought to create in the late 1930s. Bagley is a major figure in twentieth-century American educational thought, whose legacy as a democratic educator and educator of teachers merits much more attention than it has received. This book argues that Bagley’s tradition in democratic education should be at least as well known as the tradition put forth by John Dewey.