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Joseph W. Mauck
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Joseph W. Mauck was born in Cheshire, Ohio on August 17, 1852. He received his BA (1875), MA (1875), and LL.D. (1895) from Hillsdale College in Michigan. He was a professor of Greek (1876-1879), Latin (1881-1883) at Johns Hopkins University before assuming the presidency at the University of South Dakota in 1891. His arrival came at dubious time due to sudden death of President Edward Olsen (1887-1889), and the dissention by students and faculty over President Howard Grose’s administration (1890-1891). Mauck’s term proved to be a stabilizing and optimistic force for the university. President Mauck’s six years at USD represented a period when South Dakota high schools were developing better standards and curriculums for admission to institutions of higher education. Only a small number of students were prepared to enter the freshman class, and to compound matters, the legislature was providing limited financial support to the university. The amount of courses at USD increased but with an undermanned faculty. Mauck never faltered under these discouraging factors, not the least of which was the burning of University Hall (Old Main) in 1893. The rebuilding of Old Main began during Mauck’s administration. Mauck resigned in 1898 to pursue business opportunities; he became the superintendent and vice president of the Chicago and Milwaukee Electric Railway. In 1902 he returned to his alma mater, assuming the presidency of Hillsdale College until his retirement in 1922. He and his wife has three daughters—Ruth, Frances, and Marcia—and one son-Wilfred. Dr. Mauck died on July 7, 1937 in Hillsdale, Michigan.
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