Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Encyclopedia of Baldwin Wallace University History: Personnel - W

An Index of Historical Content and Their Sources

◄ Encyclopedia of Baldwin Wallace University History: Personnel - T

*No content currently exists for the Personnel - U & V. Check back again.

Wagner, Larsen

Citation: “Coach Larsen Wagner,” Baldwin-Wallace College News Letter 10, no. 7 (1944): p. 4.

Athletic Director Ray Watts has just announced that Larsen Wagner, Ohio Wesleyan University basketball and baseball coach for the past three years, has been appointed as assistant professor in the Department of Physical Education at Baldwin-Wallace. He will also assist in coaching football and basketball.

A native Clevelander, Wagner was outstanding in football, basketball, and baseball at West Tech High in 1918, 1919, and 1920. After spending one year at Dayton University, he enrolled at Berlin College where he gained all-Ohio *football honors as center in 1924 and 1925. He coached at Oberlin High in 1926-27 moving from there to Toledo- Waite for three years. From here he shifted to Toledo DeVilbiss High where he tutored basketball and football for ten years before going to Ohio Wesleyan. Besides his A. B. from Oberlin, Coach Wagner received a master's degree from Columbia in 1934. He has also done considerable work toward a doctor's degree at the University of Michigan.

He will replace Barclay Sanders who resigned recently to become a personnel official at Thompson Products, Inc. 

Citation: “Joining the Ranks of B-W Emeriti,” Baldwin-Wallace College News Letter 10, no. 7 (1944): p. 4.

"I'm really going to miss all this," Lars Wagner said, "I'll miss the close association with the young men and the entire athletic staff here at B-W. There has never been any lack of harmony and I enjoyed my stay very much."

A 36-year coaching career came to an end for the professor emeritus of health and physical education with the close of the 1966-67 season.

The doubleheader with Oberlin College, his alma mater, was a fitting conclusion to the 23 years of this long career that were spent at B-W. His team of Yell ow Jacket baseball players won 9-1, 7-6, to finish the season with a 9-7 record.

Nine has been a lucky number for J. Larsen Wagner through the years, and he was happy to have nine victories for his players in the final season. In his undergraduate days at Oberlin, he wore the numeral nine. He had the distinction while there of being all-Ohio football center.

A graduate of Oberlin, he earned a master's degree at Columbia University.

He began his coaching career in Toledo where he coached at both Devilbiss and Waite High Schools. In 1941 he was appointed to the coaching staff of Ohio Wesleyan University.

Coming to Baldwin-Wallace in 1944 as a football aide, he has coached basketball, baseball and bowling, with baseball and intramurals his areas of responsibility in recent years. When Ray Watts gave up basketball, Wagner stepped into his shoes, serving from 1951 to 1953 as head coach.

Ward, F. D.

Citation: “B-W. Students Are Sorry That Professor Ward Is Retiring From Faculty,” The Exponent, May 20, 1921, p. 2.

Professor F. D. Ward, head of the Psychology and Education departments, of B-W., has signified his intention to retire from active participation in college work, and the entire Student body express their_regret.

Professor Ward came to Baldwin University in 1905 from Lorain, O., where lie held the position of superintendent of public schools. During the fifteen years in which he has been connected with the college, Mr. Ward has always been active in furthering its interests, livery year he visited many high schools in behalf of the college and was a much-sought-for commencement speaker.

In addition his college work, Professor Ward was a frequent preacher in surrounding towns. One story told of him is that, hearing of a country church which had closed up on account of dissension among its members, lie went right in, preached free of charge and put the church back on its feet.

In interviews with several family members the unanimous opinion seems to be that Professor is undoubtedly the most versatile man connected with the college. There are few subjects in which Mr. Ward is not very well versed, and many in which lie is n master. Never dogmatic but always anxious to cooperate Mr. Ward is an ideal colleague.

Beloved and respected by everyone, it is with sincere regret that the students see the retiring of Professor Ward.

Warner, Millard Fillmore

Citation: Thomas. A. Stiger, ed., The X Ray (Berea, OH: Baldwin University, 1896), p. 16.

Millard Fillmore Warner, the fifth president of Baldwin University, was born in Tuscarawas Co., O., in 1848. He was fitted for college in the preparatory department of Ohio Wesleyan University, a college located at Delaware, O. In 1871, he graduated from the University, receiving the degree of Bachelor of Arts. In the fall of the same year, he went to Drew Theological Seminary where he graduated two years later with the degree of Bachelor of Divinity.

His first work was service as a pastor in the Newark Conference in New Jersey. In 1879, he was transferred to the North Ohio Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and served in various pastorates, among which were those of Ashland, Wellington and Shelby. In 1886, he entered the Faculty of Baldwin University and was soon after elected to the vice-presidency. A vacancy occurring in the presidential chair, through the resignation of President Stubbs, now of University of Neva.ua, Professor Warner was elected Acting President of Baldwin University. In 1895, Dr. Warner was elected President and transferred from the chair of Literature to that of Philosophy. In President Warner, the University has a man, wise, genial, and an educator in the truest sense of the word. Under his skillful guidance, the University is sure to have continued prosperity. He has always been a great favorite with the students.

Weaver, Orlee E.

Citation: John J. Martin, ed., The X Ray (Berea, OH: Baldwin University, 1900), p. 22.

Orlee E. Weaver came from Greenwich, 0., to take up his duties as Professor of Piano and Pipe Organ, September 1897. Professor Weaver is a thorough musician and an excellent instructor.

He was born at Ripley, 0., February 2, 1874. At the age of seven he commenced his musical studies, and has pursued them ever since.

He has studied under some of the foremost teachers of America and Europe. His experience as a teacher covers a period of eight years of marked success. Mr. Weaver has proven himself a valuable acquisition to the College Faculty.

Wheeler, Rev. John

Citation: Charles F. Mott, ed., Palladian (Berea, OH: Baldwin University, 1897), p. 16.

The first President of Baldwin University was born at Portsmouth, England, April 15, 1815. In 1820 he came to America with his parents and settled at Bellefontaine, O. He was a student at Norwalk Seminary, 0., Allegheny College, Meadville, Pa., and Asbury University, Greencastle, Ind., graduating from the latter Institution in 1840. For two years he served as Principal in the Franklin Institute, Indianapolis, Ind., and then became Professor of Latin in the Indiana Asbury University, at which time he received the degree of D.D. from his Alma Mater.

In 1855 Dr. Wheeler became the first President of Baldwin University where he labored faithfully under great difficulties for fifteen years. For the next five years he was President of Iowa Wesleyan University, and in 1875 entered the ministry and served as Pastor and Presiding Elder until his death, June 18, 1881.

To those who knew Dr. Wheeler well, any mention of him will bring to mind certain characteristics from which it would be difficult to separate his memory. His friendly interest, his gentlemanly bearing and courteous manners, his ready sympathy in joy or grief, his conscientious regard for the rights of others all left their impress upon those with whom he was associated. He was quick to foresee and meet emergencies, and never faltered in the path of duty though difficulties mountain high beset him. He had a rare gift to see and recognize opportunities, seeming to take in at a glance their possibilities, while to others they seemed of but doubtful results, or beyond hope of achievement. Once recognized he had the courage of his convictions, and brought to bear upon them his untiring energies and his steady, persistent faith. To these qualities German Wallace College owes its existence to-clay, as well as the enlarged vista opened to B. U. so soon after he came to it. But for that enlargement it just long ago have followed in the footsteps of Norwalk Seminary.

His long-repressed desire for a thorough education, and his difficulties in obtaining it gave him a tender sympathy, for the many in like stress of circumstances, and a readiness to aid such to the utmost, to aid themselves. No student was more certain of a hearty welcome from Dr. Wheeler than he who came burdened and distressed between the desire of a liberal education and the poverty that seemingly forbade such aspirations.

In the recitation room he was an inspiration; in the pulpit strong, scholarly and instructive, presenting the truth with the directness and earnestness of one sent with a message. He always carried with him the feeling that an unconverted student was a burden on his soul, a charge for which he must give account.

Wherever Dr. John Wheeler was met, whether in his own home circle, or in society, in the class rooms or the pulpit, he was ever and always the cultured, courteous Christian gentleman.

White, John Williams

Citation: A. R. Webber, Life of John Baldwin, Sr. of Berea, Ohio (The Caxton Press, 1925), 203-205.

When I entered Baldwin University as a student, the Greek professor was John W. White, about twenty-three years of age. He was then writing a Greek book for colleges, to be called “White's First Greek. “He looked the scholar and student that he was. Within two years his book was off the press and on the market. So excellent was the work that Harvard College adopted it at once and gave him a call to teach Greek. He was then promoted rapidly in that, the oldest and greatest college in America, where he taught for thirty-five years, and was regarded, when he retired, as America's leading Greek scholar.

He was an author of books in the literary world as well, and his text books have been adopted by many colleges and universities throughout the world.

The following account of his life, works, and decease, went the round of the press, as follows:

“EMINENT GREEK SCHOLAR DIES

“Prof. John Williams White Passes Away After Long Illness

“Taught Thirty-five Years at Harvard

“John Williams White, professor-emeritus of Greek at Harvard, of world-wide reputation as student, author, and teacher, died at his home, 18 Concord Avenue, Cambridge, yesterday. Professor White was seventy-eight years old and had been ill for many months.

“No man in the university world was more highly esteemed and honored than Professor White, whose labors at Harvard, covering a period of thirty-five years, won him a place among the greatest authorities on Greek. He revolutionized the study of it, created a furor in educational circles by advocating sight reading, established the stereopticon as a systematic fixture of its study, and was distinctly America's leading Greek scholar when he retired from the faculty in 1909.

“Won Honors Abroad. -His archaeological research, his vast experience in wide fields of learning, and his numerous works in literature, made him an international figure and gained him honors in the old world as in the new.

“Preparation in the leading colleges of America and Europe afforded him splendid opportunities to compare methods of teaching, and when he went to Harvard in 1874, as tutor in Greek, he found a field of endeavor worthy of his best efforts.

“He was advanced to an assistant professorship in 1877, and became professor in 1884, his energy, initiative and wisdom winning him a place in the first rank of educators who were at that time engaged in transforming the comparatively provincial college into one of the world's greatest universities.

“His literary works have become recognized as final authorities, and his text books have been adopted everywhere. As a Greek master he has occupied the highest position among educators.

“He was born in 1849, in Cincinnati, the son of the Rev. John Whitney White. He was graduated from Wesleyan University in 1868, receiving his A.M. there in 1871. For three years he studied at the University of Berlin, and upon his return to America was engaged at Harvard, some of his works having already attracted attention and roused interest in his methods.

“The graduate school was then new at Harvard and Professor Wlhte continued his studies there, being awarded the Ph.D. and A.M. in 1877.

“He was closely identified with the early efforts of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens, and in the year of its founding, 1881, he devised the plan by which it has been perpetuated, through cooperation among the American universities and colleges, his selection as first chairman of the managing committee of the institution being his reward. He was elected first president of the Cooperative Society in 1882, in recognition of his executive abilities.

“His papers won him additional honors and distinction, among them honorary presidency of the Archaeological Institute of America, honorary membership in the British Society for the Promotion of Hellenic Study, fellowships in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a degree of Litt.D. from Cambridge University, England.

“His published works were numerous, and many many of his text books have been adopted in leading universities.“

Wilker, Viktor J.

Citation: Thomas. A. Stiger, ed., The X Ray (Berea, OH: Baldwin University, 1896), p. 21.

Professor Victor Wilker. Source: Page 10, 1917 Grindstone.

Click on the image to enlarge.

Professor V. Wilker, of German Wallace College, who has, since 1874, had charge of the Modern Languages in Baldwin University, was born near Osnabruck, Hannover, Germany, in 1842. While yet a boy, his father emigrated to America, and located in Cincinnati. Here the Professor received his early education, which he continued in German Wallace College. I say continued, because Prof. Wilker is one of those true scholars who regards his education as never completed. For many years he has been an active leader in educational matters, first in the public schools, then in private schools, and since 1873, in German Wallace College, where he holds the chair of Modern Languages and Latin. He traveled abroad in 1878 and spent much time in Paris. Prof. Wilker is well known to readers of magazines and other periodicals, especially German. He has written a series of articles on the Centennial, the Paris, the Chicago, and several smaller Expositions, mostly in German. To the students of German Wall ace College and those of Baldwin University who have been in his classes, his broad and liberal ~· · education, his industry and his kindness of heart have become proverbial.

Citation: John J. Martin, ed., The X Ray (Berea, OH: Baldwin University, 1900), p. 20.

Professor Wilker, teacher of Modern Languages in Baldwin University, was born near Osnabruck, Hanover, Germany, but came early in life to this country. He began his education at Cincinnati, his home. Then he entered German Wallace College, and since 1873 he has held the chair of Modern Languages and Latin in that institution. In 1878 he went to Europe. By the students both of Baldwin University and of German Wallace College he is beloved and honored.

Citation: “Head of Chemistry Department Resigns,” The Exponent, December 5, 1917, p. 3. 

Professor A. V. Wilker Accepts Responsible Position With the National Carbon Works

The students were much surprised Tuesday-to learn of the resignation of Professor Arthur Wilker who has been in charge of the Department of Chemistry since 1913. Not only has lie increased the scientific standard of Baldwin- Wallace, but he has also been an inspiration to the boys in their athletic activities.

It is mainly through his untiring efforts that B.-W. has a football team and besides this he has greatly aided in placing the college in the Ohio Athletic Conference. He will continue as Graduate Manager of the Athletic Board for the rest of the year. Professor Wilker has accepted a position with the National Carbon Works in Cleveland. The best wishes of the students go with him in his new work.

Citation: Frances F. Mills, ed., “1842-Victor Wilker-1923,” Baldwin-Wallace Alumnus 73, no. 2 (1923): pp. 3-4.

Just as we go to press the message reaches us that our beloved old professor, Dr. Victor Wilker, is no more.

In the silent watches of the night his spirit winged its way to the heavenly abode.

He is now receiving the reward of a life-time of self-sacrificing service, unselfish endeavor, and zealous labor.

Forty-six years students of Baldwin-Wallace sat at the feet of this godly teacher and imbibed not only a knowledge of some language from a master of that tongue but also a knowledge of the life that counts from a man who lived for his fellowmen.

To know Professor Wilker was to love him.

His friends in the Baldwin-Wallace family are legion, and many a furtive tear will flow on his departure.

Dr. Victor Wilker was born in Germany in 1842 and came to this country at the age of six. He settled in Cincinnati where he was educated in the public schools. He taught in the public schools of Indiana when a young man, trying to earn enough money to enable him to secure a college education. School teaching in Indiana in those days meant real pioneering, and Dr. Wilker delighted to tell of the hardships of those early days.

He was called to service in the Civil War, and immediately on receiving his discharge at Indianapolis he entered German Wallace College graduating with the A. B. degree in 1872. Commencement visitors of last June will recall his address at the alumni banquet, at which the members of the fiftieth anniversary class were the guests of honor.

The year following his graduation he became a member of the faculty of his Alma Mater and taught continuously in this college for forty-six years. He was professor of modern languages and a philologist of the first rank. For many years he was secretary of the faculty and also served as vice-president of the institution for some years.

Professor Wilker was a master of description and hundreds of articles from his pen have appeared in Scribners, Century, the church Advocates, and other magazines. He was greatly interested in World's Fairs, and attended the big expositions at Philadelphia in 1876, in Chicago in 1893, Paris in 1879, Buffalo in 1901, St. Louis in 1904, and San Francisco. His articles on these expositions were widely read.

Professor Wilker was a great traveler, and his last European trip was probably the beginning of the breakdown that finally resulted in his death. He tramped through Europe on foot in 1914 at the age of 73. At the outbreak of the World War he was marooned with hundreds ·of other American citizens. After anxious months he finally succeeded in making his way back to America via steerage and this trip brought on an attack of bronchial pneumonia which weakened him greatly.

He was married in 1862 to Minnie Unnewehr of Batesville, Ind. One son. from this marriage, John, a banker, resides in Batesville. He was married again in 1881 to Caroline Schultz of Lansing, Mich. Two children of this marriage survive. They are Edith, teacher of English in Cleveland West High School, and Arthur, general superintendent of the National Carbon Co., Long Island, N. Y. Both are alumni of B-W. Professor Wilker was also survived by four grandchildren, Mrs. Esther Wolcott of LaGrange, Ohio; Norma Wilker, teacher in Garfield Heights High School; Thomas and Edith Caroline Wilker. Mrs. Wolcott and Miss Norma are graduates of B-W.

Professor Wilker was active until four days before his death, · which occurred on January 12. The funeral was held on Sunday afternoon, January 14, from B-W. Music Hall, Berea, with burial at Woodvale cemetery. Dr. G. E. Hiller, a friend of over fifty years, preached the sermon.

Faculty Resolutions

Among the many who today mourn the departure of a true friend and brother, and who rejoice over the triumphs of a great soul and a life of rich fruitage, none can be more keenly sensitive to the loss sustained than those who in the years past have been most intimately associated with him as coworkers, and who consequently knew him best.

Prof. Wilker was, for forty-five years, a most faithful, devoted and capable teacher in this College. Himself a profound scholar, a man of truly great character, of unique charm and personality, he grew with his work and gave his entire active life wholly and most unselfishly to this Institution of Christian culture.

He declined positions of greater prominence, and, as it seemed to others, of wider opportunity, and at sacrifice of his own material advantage, devoting himself with a single eye and purpose to the young life of the Church and to the Institution which came to be part of his very self.

To his coworkers he was always a loyal friend and congenial associate, ever sharing generously with them the joys and labors, the satisfactions and responsibilities of their common task. He was a man of harmony and peace, and of kindliest Christian spirit, with whom to labor and associate was a privilege and a benediction.

To his students he was first of all a great, enthusiastic, highly respected teacher. To them he was also a friend. But he was even more than a friend; he was like a father, lavishing freely upon his students a fatherly tenderness and devotion. And never was such a teacher's friendship more generously and spontaneously reciprocated. Thousands of men and women throughout the world who were with him in the class room and in the social circle in bygone days will cherish his memory with filial affection and call him blessed.

"Large was his soul--as large a soul

as e'er

Submitted to inform a body here:

High as the place 'twas shortly in

Heaven to have,

But low and humble as his grave;

So high that all the virtues there did

come

As to the chiefest seat,

Conspicuous and great;

So low that for me too it made a

room."  

Wisner, Julia

Citation: “In Memoriam,” The Exponent, October 10, 1917, p. 3.

Miss Julia E. Wisner, Baldwin-Wallace ’84, died at the home of her mother, Mrs. H.B. Wisner, on Seminary street, Berea, Sept. 24, 1917. Miss Wisner was for many years a missionary in India and in the summer of 1915 had returned to Berea for a year's furlough. Her death removes from the missionary service an efficient and consecrated worker. The funeral services, which were held at the family home on Sept. 25, were in charge of Rev. J. B. Bond of Oberlin, assisted by Rev. C. D. Gage. Mrs. John Mitchell of Cleveland, gave an address as the representative of the Foreign Missionary Society of the M.E. Church.

Miss Wisner graduated from Baldwin-Wallace in the class of 1884 and at a later time received the degree of Master of Arts in recognition of her able work abroad. During her year in India she was connected with schools for girls at Rangoon, Calcutta, Dayeeling and Bangore. Everywhere her work was crowned with the highest success. Great inducement were offered if she would enter government service, but she remained loyal to her missionary call. She was honored by being one of three women chosen to serve on a commission appointed to consider education in India. The life of Julia was one of which her Alma Mater can be proud and it is to be hoped that in the years to come many young women inspired by her example will help to carry the Gospel of the Son of God to lands across the sea.

Wright, Louis Clinton

Citation: Albert L. Marting, ed., “President Wright Resigns,” Baldwin-Wallace Alumnus 25, no. 3 (1947): pp. 5-6.

Dr. Louis Clinton Wright announced his retirement as president of Baldwin-Wallace at the annual meeting of the Board of Trustees held on Saturday, June 21. The resignation was accepted with ·regret and Mr. A. Fred Crossman, the chairman of the board, was asked to name a committee to seek and nominate a successor. Dr. Wright's statement to the Board of Trustees follows:

"In presenting my thirteenth annual report to the Board of Trustees oi Baldwin-Wallace College, I am recording the first year's work of the second century of college history. It is one more report than I had previously expected to write, since it had been my intention to retire in 1946. Only because the college was confronted with the unique problems arising from G. I. enrollment, which doubled the size of the student body, required a fifty per cent increase in faculty, and brought terrific responsibilities for housing students, faculty and administrative staff, did it seem imperative to continue. Anyone might have greatly desired to dodge a year which not only doubled administrative work but brought also unprecedented difficulties. It has, however, been an important year in the total life of the college and in the educational opportunities which it has provided for nearly 2000 different students.

Thirteen years ago, upon repeated invitation by the trustee committee and faculty, I assumed the duties of the college presidency after serving as a trustee for more than ten years. I came with the idea of remaining for four years and seeking to make the transition from a constituency largely related to German Methodism, rapidly being merged into the total American Methodism, and to bring the college more favorably to the attention of greater Cleveland. The reception. given me was most cordial, the cooperation very nearly one hundred per cent, and the support of alumni and friends of the college far greater than I anticipated. The years have been crowded and the work for the most part satisfying.

The time for me to retire because of age has more than arrived. Eagerly do I look for release from the ceaseless responsibilities and the perplexing educational and financial problems of the immediate future. I, therefore, resign as president of Baldwin-Wallace College, to take effect not later than one year from now-July 1, 1948, and if the trustees can satisfactorily arrange for the administration of the college, I would like to be released by January 1, 1948. I recommend that a strong committee be named to look for my successor. If my health permits, I shall be glad to continue my work within the above limits, assisting the college in every possible way in making this transition to a new leader as little disturbing to the total program of the college as possible."

President Wright came to Baldwin- Wallace after a pastorate of fourteen years at Epworth-Euclid Church, Cleveland. His leadership at B-W. has been marked by outstanding expansion in enrollment and assets as well as by the addition of a large number of new buildings. Contacts with greater Cleveland and northern Ohio have been greatly increased and the position of the college in the educational world strengthened. In this connection the following facts are of interest.

The enrollment has increased from 583 students in 1934 to a total enrollment of almost 2000 for the year 1946-47.

The assets of the college have increased over $2,000,000 during the period Dr. Wright has been president and now total over $5,000,000.

The annual operating budget increased from $223,260 in 1934 to over $1,000,000 in 1946-47.

Among improvements to the physical plant made during this period are the following:

New buildings erected: Merner-Pfeiffer Hall, Burrell Astronomical Observatory, new athletic field and stadium and the president's home. Kulas Musical Arts Building was greatly enlarged, Kohler Hall re- , built, indoor swimming pool constructed and a central heating plant installed on the South campus. The Ott Memorial building was purchased and remodeled to house the School of Commerce. Two fraternity houses were purchased as well as two apartments and nine single residences for the housing of faculty members. The Adams House, Mattison House, Matthews House and two other homes were purchased and remodeled as residence halls for women. A student union was built and furnished in Marting Hall and improvements made to Dietsch Hall, Marting. Hall, Carnegie Science Hall and the Home Economics House. A student health center was also established. A dormitory accommodating 225 men and a large recreation and social building, gifts of the federal government, are in the process of construction. There are also some funds on hand for a new physical and health education building for men, a new home economics building, a new library, and a dormitory for women.

President Wright is a graduate of Syracuse University and of Boston University School of Theology. The latter institution also conferred upon him the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in 1917. Both Ohio Wesleyan University and Syracuse University honored him with the degree of Doctor of Laws, and in 1946 Boston University gave him the degree of Doctor of Science in Education.

During the first World War he was a director of Y. M. C. A. work in northern France. While pastor of Epworth-Euclid Church, Cleveland, a new edifice was constructed at a cost of $1,500,000. Widely known in church circles, he was a member of six General Conferences of the Methodist Church, as well as the Methodist Ecumenical Conference in 1931, and the Uniting Conference of 1939. In 1938 he was an exchange preacher and lecturer in England.

During his thirteen years at Baldwin- Wallace, Dr. Wright has been in constant demand as a public speaker and has averaged four addresses per week during that period. He is listed in Who's Who in America, Who's Who in New England, and Who's Who in the Western Hemisphere. Asked what he intended to do upon his retirement, Dr. Wright replied, "I plan to do plenty of fishing. I will, however, naturally continue my interest in educational and religious work."

*No content currently exists for the Personnel - X, Y, & Z. Check back again.