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Goodwine, Fremont (1857-1956) | Purdue University Libraries, Archives and Special Collections

Name: Goodwine, Fremont (1857-1956)

Historical Note:

The following came from Fremont Goodwine's obituary written August 25, 1956. The publication information is unknown.

On August 25, 1956, a part of Purdue's past died. Fremont Goodwine, Class of 1878, Purdue's oldest living alumnus, passed away at the age of ninety-nine in St. Joseph, Louisiana.

He was one of the thirteen members of the original freshman class which entered Purdue in 1874. Because of his close friendship with John Purdue, founder of the University, young Fremont chose Purdue as the college he would attend. While Fremont was being examined for entrance to the University, John Purdue laid his hand on the young man's shoulder and said. "This is one of my constituents." Later, on the night preceeding Purdue's burial, Fremont was one of his bodyguards at the casket.

Born in West Lafayette, he lived in Indiana for more than fifty years. As an employee of the public school system, he spent his first six years in the academic profession as a teacher, and the next eight years as a principal and, finally, as a county superintendent of education.

As an active Republican, he voted the straight Republican ticket since 1880. He was named for John C. Fremont, the Republican candidate for President in 1856. In fact, Fremont enjoyed politics so much that he actively participated in it. Elected to the Indiana State Senate in 1897, he held the position for twelve years, acting as President pro tem for one session. For four sessions he served as chairman of the finance and budget committees which held a large responsibility for the state's appropriations. In 1908 he was the unsuccessful Republican candidate for Lt. Governor of Indiana.

In 1909 the Goodwine family pulled up its roots from Indiana and moved to Natchez, Mississippi. The following year they again migrated--this time to a cotton plantation outside St. Joseph, Louisiana. While in St. Joseph, Goodwine served as a postmaster for a while.

Besides being the oldest living Purdue Alumnus, Mr. Goodwine had held other similar honors. He was the Oldest Mason in Louisiana, and the second oldest member of Sigma Chi fraternity. He kept in touch with the Alumni Association religiously.

Sources: Obituary fond among papers, no publication information is available.

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