It was less than a decade after the end of the Civil War when Drury's Congregationalist founders, many of whom were abolitionists, chose Springfield, Missouri as the site for a new college. Springfield was selected, in part, because it had been so terribly scarred by war. In an early description of the college's mission, Nathan Morrison, Drury's first President, wrote that the college sought to "minister to the healing of the horrid wounds made by civil war."
Drury College was founded in 1873 as an "independent church-related" college with a commitment to personalized higher education. Its Congregationalist founders envisioned an institution that would offer all students, regardless of their gender, race or creed, both a sound liberal arts education and a more practical education in various applied studies.
Drury has since maintained relationships with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the United Church of Christ. The UCC relationship dates back to the founding of the college by Congregationalists from New England. The DOC relationship was established in 1909 with the formal organization of the Drury School of Religion. Both denominational traditions have influenced Drury’s mission.
Today, the Chaplain's Office offers a variety of spiritually-based campus activities for every member of the Drury community.