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Ernst, Fritz | Purdue University Libraries, Archives and Special Collections

Name: Ernst, Fritz

Historical Note:

Fritz Ernst graduated from high school in Madison, Indiana. He then attended Purdue University and was a member of the Class of 1900.

Per his autobiography, "At the time Purdue had a rather rough reputation and they were called "Boiler Makers." I had never been away from home, was rather inexperienced, and just a simple home boy. I went to Purdue at Lafayette, Indiana with fear and trembling, as I thought that every time I went past an alley or around the corner someone would get rough with me and try to hold me up." Ernst rented a room in a house at the corner of Wood and College Avenue for $4.00 a month, and his board included 21 meals, for $2.00 a week.

While at Purdue, Ernst was the editor in chief of the Exponent. Fritz Ernst and Wiley J. Huddle of Indiana University are known for finding the bucket used for the "Old Oaken Bucket." Ernst graduated from Purdue in 1900 with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering.

Ernst worked two years after graduating from Purdue in the editorial department of "Railway Age." He then returned to Purdue as an instructor in railway mechanical engineering. Ernst then joined the Fitzhugh Luther Company, and was later employed at American Steel Foundries as sales engineer in 1907, and rose to the position of vice-president in charge of sales and a director of the company. He was a director of the Chicago City Opera Company, member of the executive committee of the Chicago Association of Commerce, and a director of the Chicago Crime Commission. Fritz Ernst was president of the Purdue Alumni Association from 1945-1948. He was also a member of the executive committee of the board of directors of the Purdue Research Foundation.


Ernst, Fritz (circa 1896). Small Town Boy goes away to College.

Retrieved January 27, 2010 from: http://earchives.lib.purdue.edu/u?/debris,25733X

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