Cornelis de Kiewiet

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Cornelis de Kiewiet
Acting President of
Cornell University
In office
Preceded by Edmund Ezra Day
Succeeded by Deane Waldo Malott
Personal details
Born (1902-05-21)May 21, 1902
Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Died February 15, 1986(1986-02-15) (aged 83)
Washington, D.C.

Cornelis Willem de Kiewiet (May 21, 1902 – February 15, 1986) was a 20th-century historian most notable for having served as president of Cornell University and the University of Rochester.

De Kiewiet was born in the Netherlands, but grew up in South Africa, where his father went as a diamond and gold-seeker and later worked as an employee of the Transvaal Republic's Railway. In the early 1920s, Cornelis earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in history from the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, and, in 1927, he earned his Ph.D. in History from the University of London.

De Kiewiet emigrated to the United States in 1929 when he was offered a position teaching European history at the University of Iowa. In 1941, he joined the faculty of Cornell University, where he taught modern European history and pursued his research interests in British colonial policy, particularly in South Africa. In the mid-1940s, de Kiewiet became dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Cornell and, in 1948, he was named University provost.[1] The following year, de Kiewiet was appointed Cornell's acting president as well[2] and served in that position for two years until he was recruited to become president of the University of Rochester in 1951. He served as Rochester's president until his retirement in 1961.[3] In retirement, de Kiewiet devoted his energies to the issue of higher education in Africa.

There is a residential building at the University of Rochester named after de Kiewiet.

Selected works[edit]


  1. ^ Office of the Provost. "Cornelis W. de Kiewiet". History of Cornell's Provosts. Ithaca, New York: Cornell University. Retrieved 2009-11-03. 
  2. ^ Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections and the Cornell News Service. "Edmund Ezra Day". Biographies of Cornell's Presidents. Ithaca, New York: Cornell University. Retrieved 2009-11-03. Cornelis W. de Kiewiet, who had been provost, was appointed acting president upon the resignation of Edmund Ezra Day in 1949 
  3. ^ Office of the President. "Cornelis de Kiewiet". Presidents of the University. Rochester, New York: University of Rochester. Retrieved 2009-11-03. 

External links[edit]

Academic offices
Preceded by
Arthur S. Adams
Provost of Cornell University
Succeeded by
Forrest F. Hill
Preceded by
Edmund E. Day
President of Cornell University (acting)
Succeeded by
Deane W. Malott
Preceded by
Alan C. Valentine
President of the University of Rochester
Succeeded by
W. Allen Wallis