John Thomas Scopes (August 3, 1900 – October 21, 1970), a teacher in Dayton, Tennessee, was charged on May 25, 1925 with violating Tennessee's Butler Act, which prohibited the teaching of evolution in Tennessee schools. He was in court in a case known as the Scopes Monkey Trial.
Scopes was born and raised in Paducah, Kentucky, but as a teenager attended Danville High School in Danville, Illinois (Danville High was also the first school at which he taught, shortly before he moved to Dayton). Scopes was a member of the class of 1919 in Salem, Illinois, which is also William Jennings Bryan's home town. After he had gained a law degree at the University of Kentucky in 1924, Scopes moved to Dayton where he took a job as the Rhea County High School's football coach, and occasionally filled in as substitute teacher when regular members of staff were off work.
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