The buildings on the University of Cincinnati’s campus house our education, athletics and community, but do we know the people they are named after?
Walter C. Langsam Library
Walter C. Langsam (Jan. 2, 1906 – Aug. 14, 1985) was president of the University of Cincinnati from 1955 to 1971. He wrote 15 books, including “The World Since 1919,” and is considered an established historian. During his time as president, Langsam grew the enrollment from 14,000 to 35,000 students and increased the budget from $10 million to $102 million.
Langsam earned a doctoral degree from Columbia University in 1930 and taught there from 1927 to 1938 where he was voted the most popular faculty member several times. He was the president of two colleges prior to the University of Cincinnati, Wagner Lutheran College of New York (1945-1952) and Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania (1952-1955).
Carl Blegen Library
Carl Williams Blegen (Jan. 27, 1887 – Aug. 24, 1971) was an archeologist known for directing the University of Cincinnati’s excavations of Hisarlik, the site of Troy, from 1932-1938.
Blegen attended the American School of Classical Studies at Athens from 1911-1913, and during World War I participated in some relief work in Bulgaria and Macedonia by Saviors Order from Greece in 1919. Eventually, he became a professor of classical archaeology at the University of Cincinnati from 1927 to 1957.
In 1965, Blegen received the first Archaeological Institute of America’s Gold Medal for archaeological achievement, which honors “a scholar who has made distinguished contributions to archaeology through his or her fieldwork, publications, and/or teaching.”
The Carl Blegen Library at the University of Cincinnati is home to an exhibit called Discovering Carl Blegen that encompasses Blegen’s work in Troy and Pylos. The American School of Classical Studies at Athens also has a Blegen Library named after Carl Blegen.
Blegen died Aug. 24, 1971 in Athens, Greece at the age of 84.
Robert S. Marx Law Library
Robert S. Marx (Jan. 28, 1889 – Sept. 6, 1960) was born in Cincinnati and graduated from the University of Cincinnati Law School in 1909 and started practicing law privately.
He felt a calling a month after World War I started and enlisted in the Army. Marx climbed the ranks and became a captain in command of a battalion Nov. 10, 1918, during one of the final battles of the war.
In 1919, Marx completed a questionnaire about his experiences during the war and specifically described his combat injury. He said, “While leading my Battery forward, a high explosive shell landed close by, killing my intelligence officer and wounding me in some 14 places.”
On Nov. 18, 1918, Marx was discharged because of his injury and returned to Cincinnati. He received the Distinguished Service Cross and the Purple Heart following his discharge and eventually became a Judge. A little over a year after his discharge, Marx met with other injured veterans on Christmas Day and from there created Disabled Veterans of the World War. Further, he would function as the first national Commander of the Disabled American Veterans.
Marx was a prominent figure in his community until he died Sept. 6, 1960.