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Brodbeck, May (26 July 1917–01 August 1983), philosopher, teacher, and university administrator, was born in Newark, New Jersey, the daughter of Louis Brodbeck and Etta Bragar. In 1941 she took a B.A. in chemistry from New York University. Upon graduating she spent a few years teaching high school chemistry, working in industry, and participating as a physicist in the Manhattan Project....

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John Grier Hibben [left to right] Charles Evans Hughes, John Grier Hibben, and John W. Davis, at Princeton, 1924. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-102283 ).

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Hibben, John Grier (19 April 1861–16 May 1933), philosopher, educator, and president of Princeton University, was born in Peoria, Illinois, the son of the Reverend Samuel Hibben and Elizabeth Grier. Born in the first year of the Civil War, Hibben was a year old when his father, a volunteer chaplain, died in a Union army camp. Brought up alone by a mother who worked hard to educate her only child, he graduated in 1882 from Princeton University as both valedictorian and class president. He studied at the University of Berlin for a year and then at the Princeton Theological Seminary; he was ordained in 1887. In that same year, he married Jenny Davidson of Elizabeth, New Jersey; they had one daughter. They moved to Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, where he served the congregation of Falling Spring Presbyterian Church as minister....

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Porter, Noah (14 December 1811–04 March 1892), minister, college professor and president, and philosopher, was born in Farmington, Connecticut, the son of Noah Porter, minister of the town’s Congregational church, and Mehetabel Meigs, who raised six other children, including Sarah Porter, founder of a famous boarding school, and Samuel Porter, an educator of the deaf. Porter prepared for college at the Farmington Academy and then entered his father’s alma mater, Yale College, at the age of sixteen. He graduated in 1831. Two events during Porter’s college years shaped his search for a vocation. He read Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s ...