Elmer Eugene Lyon

Born Lunenburg Vermont
Resided St.Tammany Parish Louisiana

Submitted by Mike Miller
Copyright All rights reserved.

Elmer E. Lyon. In an earnest discussion concerning the true worth of the country’s public school, it was a broad-minded, thoughtful, sensible school man who asserted, “It is the school superintendent and his work and standards that are the determining factors in the real value of the public schools.” Thus in placing time responsibility on the superintendent no man of mediocre talent or attainments could hope to succeed. For the past twelve years, during which period the schools of St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana, have made remarkable progress, they have been under the superintendency of Prof. Elmer Eugene Lyon, who has spent his entire life in educational work,

Professor Lyon was born at Lunenburg, Vermont, November 13, 1874, and is a son of John W. and Elizabeth M. (Carter) Lyon, grandson of John Bowker and Arvilia (Olcutt) Lyon, and great-grandson of John and Lucy Lyon. The Lyon family, or original Scotch-Irish extraction, came from Scotland to the American colonies and settled in New England before and later took part in the Revolutionary war. John Lyon was born at Salisbury, Massachusetts, July 5, 1770, became a worthy citizen of Lunenburg, Vermont, and died there March 7, 1855. His wife, Lucy, was born at Guildhall, Vermont, April 5, 1765, and died at Newport, Canada, May 11, 1867. Their son, John Bowker Lyon, was born at Lunenburg December 30, 1804, and died on his farm adjacent, June 28, 1885. This farm he hath cleared from time wilderness and it represented years of patient industry and family thrift. He married Arvina Olcutt in 1828, born at Rockingham, Vermont, of noted ancestry, November 27, 1808, who died at Lunenburg February 26, 1866.

John W. Lyon, father of Professor Lyon, is a very highly esteemed citizen of Covington, Louisiana, near which he owns a small farm. He was born at Lunenburg, Vermont, on September 13, l850, and went almost forty years of his life as an extensive farmer there. In 1888 he removed to Wentworth, New Hampshire, and for time next quarter of a century conducted a tin shop and hardware store at that point, he was active in the affairs of that town and served as selectman for several terms. In early political life he was a democrat, but later became a republican. In 1914 he came to Covington and secured his small farm, finding interest in looking after its management although practically retired from active life. To his marriage with Elizabeth M Carter, born at Concord, Vermont, June 24, 1855, the following children were born: Elmer Eugene and Virginia Rose. The latter was married first to David N. Eaton, her second marriage was to Edward R. Greenlaw, who is president of the Greenlaw Truck & Tractor Company of New Orleans.

Elmer Eugene Lyon was primarily educated in time New Hampshire literary institute, a private school at New Hampshire in New Hampshire, passing from there to Lawrence, Academy, at Groton, Massachusetts, from which institution he was graduated in 1896. He then entered time University of New Hampshire, at Durham, and was graduated with the class of 1901, with the degree of Bachelor of Science. While there he took part in many of the pleasant activities of the university outside of class work, and is a member of time Kappa Sigma Greek letter fraternity.

In the year of his graduation Mr. Lyon went to Meriden, Connecticut, where for the next two years he was a teacher in the Connecticut School for Boys, and then accepted the offices of commandant and instructor in history and literature in the Dixon Academy at Covington, Louisiana, which was founded by B. V. D. Dixon, ex-president of Sophia Newcomb College of New Orleans, where he continued for three years. For two years following he was a teacher in Rugby Academy, New Orleans, and then returned to Covington to become principal of the Covington High School. After serving as such for two years he went back to Rugby Academy, where he taught until January, 1912, in time meantime having under consideration the offer of time superintendency of the schools of St. Tammany Parish. Since taking charge he has been reappointed every four years since, his last reappointment dating from 1921 to 1925. In this position he has under iris supervision 102 white teachers and fifteen colored teachers, while time pupils aggregate 5,800.

Mr. Lyon married at New Orleans, June 12. 1906, Miss Emma Virginia Whelpley, daughter of Samuel M. and Emma (Hoffman) Whelpley, both deceased. The father of Mrs. Lyon was a civil engineer, and in that capacity built a large lighthouse at Columbia, South America, where be served as United States consul under the administration of President Harrison. Mr. Lyon owns his comfortable residence on Jackson Street, Covington. In political sentiment he is a democrat, and in religious association belongs to the Universalist Church. He is a member of Covington Lodge No. 188, Free and Accepted Masons, and St. Tammany Chapter No. 80, Royal Arch Masons, and belongs also to time Order of Odd Fellows. He has many connections that are congenial with representative professional organizations, and is in close membership with time Louisiana State Teachers Association, time National Education Association, and the Superintendents’ Division of the national body.

NOTE: A signed photograph/painting accompanies this narrative in the referenced source.

A History of Louisiana, (vol. 2), pp. 179-180, by Henry E. Chambers. Published by The American Historical Society, Inc., Chicago and New York, 1925.

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