Gilman, Daniel Coit, 1831-1908

Alternative names
Birth 1831-07-06
Death 1908-10-13

Biographical notes:

American educator.

From the description of Autograph letter signed : to W. Reid, 1871 Dec. 20. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 269584399

Biographical Note: Daniel Coit Gilman was an educator and first president of The Johns Hopkins University.

From the description of Daniel Coit Gilman papers, 1773-1925. (Johns Hopkins University). WorldCat record id: 48134620

Daniel Coit Gilman: president of the University of California, 1872-1875; president of Johns Hopkins University, 1875-1900; educator and author.

From the description of Daniel Coit Gilman papers, 1845-1910 (inclusive). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 702167527

President of the University of California at Berkeley, 1872-1875, and of Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Md., 1875-1902.

From the description of Papers, 1887-1907. (Duke University Library). WorldCat record id: 19647021

From the description of Papers, 1865-1895 [microform] from originals in Johns Hopkins University. (Rutherford B Hayes Presidential Center). WorldCat record id: 64595737

Educator; Baltimore, Md.

First president of Johns Hopkins University.

From the description of Daniel Coit Gilman letter, 1863 Nov. 19. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122454844

"Daniel Coit Gilman was born July 6, 1831 in Norwich, Connecticut. He was the fifth of nine children of William Gilman, a wealthy mill owner. Daniel attended Yale from 1848 to 1852, and after his graduation attended Harvard University briefly before making a trip in 1854 to Europe, where he eventually served as attache to the United States Legation in St. Petersburg. After his return to America in 1855, Gilman worked as a fund-raiser for the Sheffield Scientific School (affiliated with Yale) and also as assistant librarian at Yale. In 1858 he was promoted to the position of head librarian, a post which he resigned in 1865. In the meantime, he had become school visitor for New Haven. In that job, and in his subsequent post on the State Board of Education, he developed a reputation as an educational reformer. In 1872 Gilman became the president of the University of California. When the trustees of the newly-endowed Johns Hopkins University wrote to presidents Eliot of Harvard, Angell of Michigan and White of Cornell in 1874 to ask for suggestions for the presidency of the new university, all three independently recommended Gilman. The post was formally offered in early 1875; Gilman accepted, and soon achieved prominence as a educator and administrator. He is credited with having created the first full graduate program in America, and until his retirement in 1901 Gilman consistently stressed research and scholarship. After his retirement from Hopkins, he was for two years president of the new Carnegie Institution of Washington. He died in 1908" -- "Daniel C. Gilman Papers." Milton S. Eisenhower Library, Johns Hopkins University. (Retrieved October 2, 2009)

"Henry Larcom Abbot (13 Aug. 1831-1 Oct. 1927), Union soldier and engineer, was born in Beverly, Massachusetts, the son of Joseph Hale Abbot and Fanny Ellingwood... From 1850 to 1854 Abbot attended the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, graduating second in his class. As a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army Corps of Topographical Engineers, Abbot served first in the Office of Pacific Railroad Explorations and Surveys in Washington, D.C., and then in 1855 in California and Oregon surveying a railroad route... In April 1856 Abbot married Mary Susan Everett of Cambridge, Massachusetts... In 1861 Abbot began his Civil War service as assistant topographical engineer... His work earned him the brevet rank of major general, U.S. volunteers, by the war's conclusion. He was discharged from volunteer service in September 1865 and assumed his regular rank of major in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. After the war Abbot became commander of the newly established Engineer School of Application and Engineer Battalion at Willet's Point, New York. During his twenty-year tenure (1866-1886), the engineer school became both an important training center for army engineers and a major center for research in military engineering... In October 1886, Abbot was promoted to colonel and became the division engineer for the northeastern part of the United States. He remained in that position until August 1895, when he retired because of age. In retirement Abbot became a consulting engineer to the Wisconsin Central Railroad... He served as president on a board of consulting engineers for a project to build a ship canal to link Lake Erie with the Ohio River (1895-1896) and was a member of the technical committee of the New French Panama Canal Company from 1897 to 1904, during which time he resided part-time in Paris and in Panama. When the United States took over the isthmus in 1904 and began work on the Panama Canal, Abbot became a member of the American board of consulting engineers." -- "Henry Larcom Abbot ." American Dictionary of National Biography Online. (Retrieved October 2, 2009)

From the description of Letter to Henry L. Abbot, circa 1896. (University of Georgia). WorldCat record id: 460746690

Daniel Coit Gilman: president of the University of California, 1872-1875; president of Johns Hopkins University, 1875-1900; educator and author.

Daniel Coit Gilman, educator, university president, and author, was born in Norwich, Connecticut, July 6, 1831, the son of William Charles and Elizabeth Coit Gilman, descendants of the founders of Norwich. He was educated at Norwich Academy where Timothy Dwight was a classmate. At the age of fourteen Gilman's family moved to New York City where he attended a school under the direction of Calvin Tracy, his old instructor at Norwich Academy. As a result of his excellent penmanship, Gilman was introduced to library work, obtaining a position with Henry Stevens to catalog the books from the library of George Washington which had been purchased in 1848 by the Boston Athenaeum. This was followed by catalog work in the Mercantile Library of New York, with S. Hastings Grant, whose intimate friend Gilman became. From this relationship grew Norton's Literary Gazette, which they edited for several years. Through their efforts there was held the first annual meeting of American librarians in 1853.

Gilman continued his studies at the Cornelius Institute in New York before entering Yale College in 1848. After graduation in 1852, he studied for a few months at Harvard College, living in the home of Professor Arnold Guyot, who aroused in Gilman an interest in geography. In December, 1853, he and Andrew Dickson White, a close friend and classmate at Yale, sailed for Europe as attachés of the American legation at St. Petersburg. After two years abroad, Gilman returned to the United States to become assistant librarian at Yale College. In 1858 he succeeded Edward C. Herrick as librarian. Gilman was also instrumental in founding the Sheffield Scientific School, in which he served for nearly seventeen years as librarian, secretary, and professor of physical and political geography. He was also a member of the New Haven Board of Education and was influential in the adoption by New Haven schools of graded classes.

In 1872 Gilman became president of the University of California, but left that post in 1875 to become president of the newly created Johns Hopkins University. He served as president of Johns Hopkins until 1902, during which period its mode of graduate studies became the model for American universities. Gilman's success was attributable in part to his ability to attract outstanding scholars to Hopkins, but also because he placed great emphasis upon science at a time when most American college presidents regarded science as inimical to the religious and moral development of their students. In addition, Gilman was largely responsible for making Johns Hopkins the leading center of medical education in the country.

Upon retirement from Hopkins, Gilman became the first president of the Carnegie Institution of Washington, D.C. In addition, he served as vice-president of the American Bible Society; was a member of the U.S. commission investigating the U.S.-Venezuela boundary dispute; served in 1879 as president of the American Social Science Association; was a trustee of various foundations, including the Russell Sage Foundation, the Peabody Education Fund, and the John F. Slater Fund; and served as president of the National Civil Service Reform League from 1901 to 1907.

Gilman was twice married: first, on December 4, 1861, to Mary Ketcham of New York City, who died in 1869, and again, on June 13, 1877, to Elizabeth Dwight Woolsey, who survived him by fourteen months, dying in 1910. Gilman died on October 13, 1908.

From the guide to the Daniel Coit Gilman papers, 1845-1910, (Manuscripts and Archives)


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