Edwards, Elijah Evan, educator, was born in Delaware, Ohio, Jan. 26, 1831; son of the Rev. John and Elizabeth (Vanhorne) Edwards. His father was a native of Wales, and his maternal ancestors were from Holland. He was graduated from Indiana Asbury (afterward De Pauw) university in 1853 and was professor of ancient languages in Brookville college, 1853-56. He then accepted the presidency of Whitewater college. Centerville, Ind., which position he resigned in 1857 to become professor of ancient languages in Hamline university, Red Wing, Minn. He was principal of Lemont seminary, 1860-61, and until 1864 held pastorates at Taylor's Falls, Minn., and Hudson, Wis. In 1864-65 he was chaplain of the 7th Minnesota volunteer infantry. He was assistant editor of the Central Christian Advocate, St. Louis, Mo., 1865-72; professor of natural science and English literature at McKendree college, 1872-79; president of the Colorado state agricultural college, 1879-82; superintendent of city schools, Olney, Ill., 1882-85; pastor of a church in Taylor's Falls, Minn., 1886-88; assistant rector and rector of Christ church, Red Wing, Minn., 1883-90; rector of Grace church, Menomonie, Wis., 1890-92, and professor in St. John's military institute, Delafield, Wis., 1893-94. In 1894 he removed to Lancaster, Wis., where he became rector of Emanuel church. He was married Dec. 25, 1854, to Alice, daughter of the Rev. Augustus and Martha (Thomas) Eddy. Indiana Asbury university gave him the degree of Ph.D. in 1877.
The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans: Volume III 1904
Rev. E. E. Edwards was born in Delaware, Ohio, Jan. 26, 1831; was educated at Indiana Asbury University, and has been employed most of his life in educational work, serving as president of Whitewater College, Indiana, professor of Latin in Hamline University, professor of natural science at St. Charles and McKendre colleges, and president of the Colorado State Agricultural College. Mr. Edwards came to Taylor's Fall in the winter of 1860, and remained two years as pastor of the Methodist Episcopal church, and teacher in the Chicago Seminary. During the last year of the war he was chaplin of the Seventh Minnesota Volunteer Infantry. In the winter of 1885 he again [p.348] became pastor of the Taylor's Falls Methodist Episcopal church. He was married in 1854 to Alice L. Eddy, of Cincinnati, Ohio. His family consists of four sons and one daughter.
William Folsom, Fifty Years in the Northwest Chapter VIII, page 348 Biographical Summary:
Son of an itinerant Methodist preacher, graduated from DePauw University in 1853. Married Alice L. Eddy, whom he had met as her father helped rescue the Edwards' family wagon from a roadside mudhole in 1836 while they traveled from Ohio to Indianapolis, Indiana. By 1858, Edwards had become a minister in the Methodist Episcopal Church in addition to teaching at a variety of schools. During the Civil War he volunteered for service in the Seventh Minnesota Volunteer Infantry and was commissioned as a chaplain. After the war, he taught briefly before spending six years as assistant editor of the Central Christian Advocate published in St. Louis. By 1872 he was a full time professor of physics and natural history at McKendree College in Lebanon, Illinois. On May 27, 1879 the State Board of Agriculture selected him as the first president of the State Agricultural College.
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