Dr. Ernest Franklin Canaday

b. 5 May 1893 - Carroll County, MO
d. 16 Sep 1987 - Richmond, VA




My Maternal Grandfather, Dr. Ernest Franklin Canaday, was in college working on a Masters Degree in Mathematics when the First World War began and like many other young men of his time enlisted in the army as a Private to fight the German menace. When he got to Camp Funston the company commander asked if anyone could operate a typewriter. He said that he could and was immediately made company clerk and very shortly thereafter had his rank increased to Corporal. Not long after that, in recognition of the good job that he was doing and also because he was a college graduate he was promoted to Sgt. Later on a college friend joined the unit as Executive Officer, recognized my grandfather and convinced him to apply for officer training.

When he took the entrance exam he made the highest score that anyone had ever made and because of that and his training in mathematics he was sent to Fort Sill, OK for Artillery Officer training. When General Pershing put his staff together prior to leaving for Europe my grandfather was selected for it as a mathematician. After a number of false starts he was finally on a train and on his way to New York to board a ship for Europe when the war ended and so he never made the trip.

After the military he completed his Masters Degree and went on to get his Doctorate in Mathematics also. My grandfather moved to Raleigh, NC in about 1920 and became the head of the Math department at Meredith College where he stayed until his retirement about 50 years later. Not really being ready to be retired he rented his house in Raleigh, NC and moved to Buies Creek, NC where he continued to teach mathematics for another 4 years at Campbell College. When he finally retired in 1977 he and my grandmother moved to Lakewood Manor in Richmond, VA where he remained until his death in 1987 at the age of 94.

I hope that you will find this of interest to you for inclusion on the soldiers page of your website.

- Al Simms ('60) of VA - 02/17/07
What a fascinating account!  Thanks so much, Al!

(This page was created 02/21/07.)

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