The University of Southern California (USC) School of Philosophy, which began initially as the Department of Philosophy, was officially established in May 1929. The first director of the new school was Ralph Tyler Flewelling, a professor of philosophy at USC since 1917 and head of the philosophy department at the time.
In December 1929, the School moved into the newly completed Seeley Wintersmith Mudd Memorial Hall of Philosophy, which still serves as its home on the USC University Park Campus (UPC). In addition to offices, classrooms, and lecture halls, Mudd Memorial Hall is also home to the James Harmon Hoose Library of Philosophy named for noted USC philosophy professor and the first department head James Harmon Hoose.
Prior to moving to Mudd Memorial Hall, the School and its predecessor were housed in the George Finley Bovard Administration Building, which opened in 1921. The north wing of the building was called the James Harmon Hoose Hall of Philosophy, and included the philosophy library.
The School published the journal "The Personalist" beginning in 1920, a quarterly focusing on philosophy, religion, and literature. Flewelling was the founding editor. In 1980, the School changed the journal's name to the "Pacific Philosophical Quarterly".
Early directors of the School were Ralph Tyler Flewelling (1929-1945); Daniel Summer Robinson (1945-1954); William H. Werkmeister (1954-1966); and John Hospers (1968-1988). In addition, other notable faculty members included H. Weldon Carr, F.C.S. Schiller, B.A.G. Fuller, Heinrich Gomperz, and Paul Helsel, as well as F.A. Hoernle.