|Born||October 13, 1821
Savannah, Georgia, U.S.
|Died||March 22, 1895 (aged 74)
Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Henry Coppée (13 October 1821 – 22 March 1895) was an American educationalist and author.
Henry Coppée was born in Savannah, Georgia, to a family of French extraction that had formerly settled in Haiti. He studied at Yale University for two years, worked as a civil engineer, graduated at West Point in 1845, served in the Mexican–American War as a lieutenant and was breveted captain for gallantry at the battles of Contreras and Churubusco during the Mexican–American War.
He was selected by Asa Packer as the first president of Lehigh University, an office he filled from 1866 to 1875. He also served as the university's president pro tem from the death of Robert A. Lamberton in September 1893 to his own death in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania on March 22, 1895.
Lehigh University's Coppee Hall (built in 1883) was named for him; it was first a gymnasium, later the home of the Department of Arts and Science, and now is home to the Journalism and Communication program. During Coppee's tenure, much building was done on the new campus. A Moravian church on Packer Avenue was remodeled into Christmas Hall, a house for the president was erected, and Packer Hall, the university center, was built. Coppee lectured in history, logic, rhetoric, political economy and Shakespeare.
He published elementary text-books of logic (1857), of rhetoric (1859), and of English literature (1872); various manuals of drill; Grant, a Military Biography (1866); General Thomas (1893), in the Great Commanders Series; History of the Conquest of Spain by the Arab-Moors (1881); and in 1862 a translation of Marmonts Esprit des institutions militaires, besides editing the Comte de Paris's Civil War in America.
- Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Coppée, Henry". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press
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John McDowell Leavitt