Kritz - Henry Seymour - Montgomery InGenWeb Project

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Kritz - Henry Seymour

Source: Portrait & Biographical Record of Montgomery, Parke & Fountain County Indiana (Chicago: Chapman Brothers 1893) p 646
Prof. Henry Seymour Kritz, Ph.D., Principal of the Preparatory Department of Wabash College, is one of the most valuable men in the institution. His is the task of laying the foundation for later instructors to build upon. He is a very pleasant and genial gentleman and by his earnest, conscientious devotion to duty has won the esteem and confidence alike of professors, students and citizens. The subject of this sketch was born in Jefferson County, Indiana Feb 14, 1826 of parents who had emigrated a few years before from New York and Pennsylvania. After receiving the best education afford in the public schools of that day, he learned the trade of paper making. While working at his business in Indianapolis in 1845, he was caught in the machinery and so disabled in his right hand as to be disqualified for working longer at this employment.

Finding a change of occupation necessary, he entered Hanover College in 1847 with a view to becoming a professional teacher. Here he applied himself with such diligence that, although he was working his way through college by tutoring the preparatory classes two hours a day, he completed the full classical course in a year's less time than that usually required, and graduated second in a class of 20. In 1852 Prof. Kritz took charge of the Presbyterian Academy at Waveland, and remained there more than 20 years or until 1873. The academy was of high school grade, preparing students also for college. At that time it employed a corps of 4 teacher and had from 100 to 150 students. Under the administration of Prof. Kritz the school became widely known, receiving students from 10 different state many of who m have since become distinguished in the professions and in the various pursuits of business life. The school also made a splendid record during the civil war, furnishing not only a large number who served in the ranks but also many who attained distinction as colonel, majors and captains in the armies of the union. In 1873 Prof. Kritz came to Crawfordsville as Principal of the HS and 3 years later was made Superintendent of the city schools. While serving in this capacity, he was at the earnest request of Prof. Bassett, then principal of the Preparatory Dept. of Wabash College made his associate. Entering Wabash College in 1877 with the rank of full Professor he taught the Preparatory Greek and English until 1881. Oh the resignation of Prof. Bassett in that year he was made principal of the department and has since had charge of the preparatory Greek and Latin classes. He has been aided by able assistants especially Prof JH Osborn who is now his associate. The department has from 75 to 100 students annually and has acquired a reputation for efficiency and thoroughness enjoyed by very few preparatory schools. While engaged in the public school work Prof. Kritz was a frequent and very acceptable institute worker and teacher, and has been long and widely known as an enthusiastic progressive educator. He has always taken great interest in public affairs and although he has never sought or desired office he is a constant and intelligent reader of political journals, and always votes the Republic ticket. He has also very decided religious convictions, and since his college days has been a member of the Presbyterian Church in which he has been for many years a ruling elder.

Prof. Kritz was married in 1855 to Miss Mary A. BRUSH of Waveland. They have a family of 11 children, 5 sons and 6 daughters. The family have always lived at Waveland, where they have a pleasant home with spacious grounds in town and a farm adjoining. The oldest of the sons, Charles S. recently married, is a druggist at Montezuma; Frank W and Herbert S. are merchants at Waveland. The other sons are not in business. Four of the daughters are married Stella K is the wife of Rev. RV Hunter of Terre Haute; Alice is the wife of James W. Robertson a retired druggist of Waveland; Jessie is the wife of George M. Cowan of the Woolen Manufacturing Company of Yountsville, Ind; Victoria is the wife of Dr. Reese Kelso of Waveland and Lena and Nellie, twins 16 years old are at home with their parents. But few professional teachers have made so long and so successful a record and still fewer have so impressed their personality on their pupils. Hundreds of young men and men now in middle life, widely scattered in many states regard with the highest respect and veneration their old friend and teacher and rejoice that he still retains so much of the vigor and all the enthusiasm of his earlier life -- kbz
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