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John Matzko

Photo of John Matzko

Division of History, Government and Social Science
College of Arts and Science



  • PhD, History, University of Virginia
  • MA, History, University of Cincinnati Main Campus
  • BA, History, Bob Jones University


  • American Legal History (Hi 449)
  • American Military History (Hi 150)
  • Historical Research & Writing (Hi 440)
  • Historiography (Hi 406)
  • History of Civilization c. 3500 BC to AD 1650 (Hi 101)
  • Rome (Hi 301)

About John

John Matzko has been Chair, Division of Social Science since 1992, and has served as BJU prelaw advisor since 1978.  A native of New Jersey, Matzko earned a BA in history from Bob Jones University (1968), an MA from the University of Cincinnati (1972), and a PhD from the University of Virginia (1984).  He teaches courses in ancient Rome, historiography, American legal history, and historical research and writing.  For more than forty years he has also assisted with the core History of Civilization course.

Matzko has participated in three NEH Summer Institutes and Seminars: on historical archaeology (1988), the early Roman Empire (1991), and early Mormonism (2005).  He has also worked in various capacities at four historic sites: Ash Lawn: the Home of James Monroe (Charlottesville, VA), Arlington House: the Robert E. Lee Memorial (Arlington, VA), Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site (ND-MT), and Homestead National Monument of America (Beatrice, NE). He has conducted approximately 125 oral history interviews for BJU and the National Park Service.

Matzko is a member of the Organization of American Historians, the American Society for Legal History, and the Greenville County Historical Society.  He served as an abstractor for ABC-Clio (1985-2009), and he has scored AP-European History exams since 1995. Matzko has published a number of scholarly articles, book reviews, and entries in historical encyclopedias, as well as Reconstructing Fort Union (University of Nebraska Press, 2001). He has completed a draft of the first scholarly biography of Bob Jones, Sr. (1883-1968), the founder of BJU.

Matzko has for many years enjoyed singing and playing the violin, viola, and recorder in campus, church, and community groups. He is a deacon at Faith Free Presbyterian Church.  He and his late wife have one son and three grandchildren.