The Philosophy, Science & Art

The President's Thoughts

The moment we are sharing, as you read this, may well be life-changing for you, simply because you hold in your hands the possiblity of a future in the chiropractic profession and, more specifically, at Sherman College. And I happen to know this, because I was in your position over twenty years ago and found that Sherman College of Straight Chiropractic is a life-changing place to be.

First, consider chiropractic. As you read this, you will begin to understand our vision of a world populated with vibrantly alive people, all expressing their innate potential for true health, fully and without interference. You will learn how chiropractic care, through the location, analysis and correction of vertebral subluxation, contributes to just such a possible future for humanity. And you will start to realize that you can have a role in that future through a career in the profession of chiropractic.

Next, consider your choice of a profession. It is said that your profession should reflect your highest values, express your best talents, demand your fullest commitment, and deliver your greatest rewards. As you read through this information, ask yourself whether chiropractic would meet these crucial requirements for you. If it will, then you may be ready for the transformation from who you are today into the successful chiropractor you can become.

Finally, consider Sherman College. I hope that as you read this brief snapshot of chiropractic and of our campus you will catch a glimpse of the excitement that permeates Sherman College. The caring and dedication of the faculty, the openness and enthusiasm of the student body, the availability and helpfulness of the staff, even the beauty and suitability of the buildings and grounds, all speak of our deep commitment to and shared values in chiropractic. This is what makes Sherman College a very exciting and life-changing place to be.

David B. Koch, D.C., President

History of Sherman College

In the mind of Thom Gelardi, the founder of Sherman College, the chiropractic profession had a need. Helping to meet that need became his dream.

Gelardi, a doctor of chiropractic, sensed the necessity for an institution which, within an academically and intellectually stimulating environment, remained fully consistent with the goals and objectives of his profession. He envisioned a college where the natural health benefits of chiropractic could be explored, advanced and taught, then exported worldwide for the ultimate good of humanity.

In 1973, with the establishment of Sherman College of Straight Chiropractic, Thom Gelardi’s dream to fill chiropractic’s need began to be realized.

A private, non-profit institution, Sherman College’s goal is simple: to prepare its students as fully qualified primary health care providers, to assume and discharge their chiropractic responsibilities both to their patients and to society.

To that end, Sherman College has assembled a distinguished faculty of highly qualified, highly skilled professionals. It includes respected doctors of chiropractic and basic scientists from throughout the United States and the world ... men and women whose dedication to the growth and development of chiropractic is unrivaled.

The college’s facilities are outstanding. The 80-acre campus is ideally located at the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Spartanburg, South Carolina. The famous Grand Strand, the historic Low-Country, the beautiful Blue Ridge Parkway, and Atlanta are all within a three to four hour drive.

The Mack and Kitty Scallon Building is one of Sherman College’s two main facilities, housing administrative and faculty offices, classrooms, the Bahan chiropractic library, the Computer Resource Center and the Sherman College Bookstore.

The other is the E.C. Taylor Building which contains classrooms, a public lecture room, x-ray facilities and the Sherman College Chiropractic Health Center, one of the largest of its kind in the world. At the health center, students, as part of their training, provide chiropractic care to the residents of Spartanburg and the entire surrounding county. Sherman College also offers the student an opportunity to acquire the methodological skills to advance the chiropractic profession through research. The research department offers the finest instruction and equipment available to prepare the student to undertake future clinical or academic research.

Sherman College offers the doctor of chiropractic program, which provides students a fresh new perspective on life and natural good health. Consisting of basic and clinical science programs, it affords students, not only an opportunity to learn and practice the necessary chiropractic skills and health care procedures, but also the chance to broaden themselves personally to meet the challenges of the future.

The college is named in honor of the late Dr. Lyle W. Sherman, a pioneer in the development of modern chiropractic and one-time assistant director of the B.J. Palmer Chiropractic Research Clinic in Davenport, Iowa. Dr. Sherman’s commitment to humanity and to advancing the art of chiropractic was frequently recognized by his peers.

Among his many honors was selection as International Chiropractor of the Year in 1955. He served as chairman of Sherman College’s Board of Trustees until his death in 1977.

Chiropractic Heritage (The History of Chiropractic)

One day in 1878, while working in a stooped, cramped position, Harvey Lillard felt something “pop” in his neck. A few days later his hearing was gone.

Seventeen years passed in silence. Then, on September 18, 1895, Harvey Lillard related his story to Daniel David Palmer, a magnetic healer who practiced in the Davenport, Iowa, building where Lillard was a janitor.

Palmer examined the janitor’s spine and discovered a bump in the area where Lillard said he had felt the pop. Reasoning that this bump was the result of one of the spinal column’s 26 vertebrae being out of line, Palmer persuaded Lillard to let him try to restore it to its normal position.

He applied a force to the bump. There was another pop, and the bump was gone. In a few days, Lillard’s hearing was restored. In the process, chiropractic was born.

Chiropractic is a relatively new health care profession—just over 100 years old. Although the profession is young, many of its vitalistic principles date back thousands of years.

Ancient Egyptians and Greeks, while possessing little knowledge of the internal structure of the human body, were aware of the body’s continual striving to heal itself. During the Renaissance, men of learning put forth theories which spoke of “vital forces” within the body that organized its resistance to disease. The “vital force” they spoke of is what chiropractors refer to as the body’s innate intelligence.

It was Daniel David Palmer who, in 1895, discovered the relationship among the vital forces, the nerve system, the vertebrae and the expression of health. He reasoned that an innate intelligence continuously strives to maintain the body’s organization. He also realized that this innate intelligence utilizes the nerve system to assemble and transmit the information necessary to ensure the proper function of the various parts of the body.

Palmer further reasoned that a vertebra that was even slightly misaligned could cause pressure on the spinal cord or small spinal nerves. This misalignment with interference, called a vertebral subluxation, modifies the impulses carried by the nerves and this, in turn, modifies bodily function. In such a state, the body is less able to function, maintain its own health, and ultimately to express life.

After adjusting a subluxated vertebra for the first time, Palmer witnessed the restoration of spinal integrity, a dramatic change in his patient’s health and the birth of a profession.

Chiropractic grew rapidly under the guidance of Palmer’s son, B.J., who transformed the profession into an advanced science and a well-developed art. His goal was to be able to objectively locate and analyze vertebral subluxation and verify the changes that occurred when vertebrae became subluxated and when the vertebral subluxation was corrected.

Today, chiropractic has evolved into a highly developed science and art which deals not with disease, but with vertebral subluxation and its effect on the body’s natural striving toward health. Chiropractic, as a primary health care profession, recognizes and respects the body’s innate striving to maintain its own health and has developed sophisticated techniques for correcting vertebral subluxation, a major interference to that striving. Chiropractic views health as more than the absence of disease. It is optimum life expression on every level.

Contact Information

Local: 864.578.8770
Toll Free: 800.849.8771
2020 Springfield Road/PO Box 1452, Spartanburg, SC 29304
Electronic mail
General Information:
Send mail to the webmaster with questions or comments about this web site. Web design 1998 The Lewis Group, Inc.
Last modified: April 20, 1998