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White, Andrew Dickson

WHITE, ANDREW DICKSON (1832- ), American educationist, was born in Homer, New York, on the yth of November 1832. He graduated at Yale (A.B.) in 1853, studied at the Sorbonne in 1854, and at the University of Berlin in 1855-1856, meanwhile serving as attache at the United States Legation at St Petersburg in 1854-1855. He was professor of history and English literature in 1857-1863, and lecturer on history in 1863- 1867 at the University of Michigan. In 1864-1867 he was a member of the New York state Senate, and as chairman of the Committee on Education took an active part in formulating the educational features of the bill under which Cornell University (q.v.) was incorporated (1865). At Mr Cornell's suggestion Mr White drew up a plan of organization for the institution, and in 1867 became its first president, which post he held continuously until 1885, serving thereafter as a member of the board of trustees and of its executive committee. During his administration he greatly strengthened the curriculum of the university, to which he gave his architectural library, and, upon his retirement, his historical and general library of about 20,000 volumes ( including bound collections of pamphlets) and about 3000 unbound pamphlets, which was installed in a special room in the main library building of the university. In recognition of this gift the departments of history and political science of the university have been named the President White School of History and Political Science. In 1870 President Grant appointed Benjamin F. Wade, Mr White and Samuel G. Howe a commission to visit Santo Domingo and report on the advisability of the president's project for annexing it to the United States, and in 1895 he was appointed by President Cleveland a member of the commission established to determine the boundary between Venezuela and British Guiana. Dr White was United States minister to Germany in 1870-1881, and to Russia in 1892-1894, and was United States ambassador to Germany in 1897-1903. In 1899 he was president of the American delegation at the Hague Peace Conference. He received the degree of LL.D. from the University of Michigan (1867), from Cornell (1886), from Yale (1887), from St Andrews, Scotland (1902), from Johns Hopkins, (1902), and from Dartmouth (1906); L.H.D. from Columbia (1887) and D.C.L. from Oxford (1902). He was also made an officer of the Legion of Honour, was awarded the royal gold medal of Prussia for arts and sciences in 1902, was president of the American Historical Association, of which he was a founder, in 1884, and was actively identified with various other learned bodies.

His publications include The Greater States of Continental Europe (1874) ; A History of the Warfare of Science with Theology in Christendom (2 vols., 1896), his most important work, his Autobiography (2 vols., New York, 1905) and Seven Great Statesmen (1910).

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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