Biographical Note

Orlando M. Fernald held the Amos Lawrence Professorship of Greek Language and Literature at Williams College from 1872 until his sudden death in 1902. In that time, he gained the respect of colleagues and students alike, influencing 30 years of Williams freshmen. He was born in 1840 and attended Phillips Exeter Academy and Harvard University. He was a prominent scholar of Homer and Greek Architecture and was involved for 15 years with the American School in Athens, Greece. Fernald was remembered by his Williams colleagues as an "accurate scholar," "a born teacher," and a "rigid disciplinarian." Fernald's administrative responsibilities included ten years as Secretary of the Faculty, a brief period as Acting Secretary of the College, and duties on more than a dozen faculty committees. His scholarship and service were rewarded by Williams College in 1873 when he received an honorary Masters degree and in 1901 when he was awarded the LLD.

1840born in Candia, NH on 1 September
1856-59attended Phillips Exeter Academy as a scholarship student
1859-60served as a tutor in Greek at Exeter
1860entered Harvard University as a sophomore
1864received a B.A. from Harvard
1864-65served as principal of the High School at Exeter
1865was hired as teacher of Classics at Springfield High School
1871married Mary Lathrop at South Hadley Falls on July 5
1872-1902held the Amos Lawrence Professorship of Greek Language and Literature at Williams College
1878published Selections from the Greek historians
1878-88served as Secretary of the Faculty
1893served as Acting Secretary of the College
1901received an LLD from Williams
1902died of sudden heart failure on April 15

Further biographical information on Orlando Fernald may be found in the following sources:

Gul, article by Franklin Carter (1904)

Williams alumni review, vol.15, no.4 (Apr. 1923), p.129

Williams literary monthly, vol.17, no.10 (May 1920), p.483-5

Williams President's reports, article by John Hewitt at the 1902 Commencement

"Extracts from the minutes of faculty meetings regarding appointment of faculty committees and purposes for which appointed, 1827-1904."

Orlando Marcellus Fernald (1840-1902) Papers, 1861-1902

Biographical Note
Scope and Content Note