Edward Sturgis Ingraham

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Edward Sturgis Ingraham (April 8, 1852—August 16, 1926) was the first superintendent of the Seattle Public Schools, a noted mountaineer who climbed to the summit of Mount Rainier 13 times, and a leader in the effort to establish Mount Rainier National Park. Seattle's Ingraham High School is named in his honor, as is the Ingraham Glacier on Mount Rainier.

Early life[edit]

Ingraham was born in Albion, Maine. His parents, Samuel and Almira, were natives of the same state, their ancestors being numbered among the earliest settlers of New England. Samuel Ingraham was a master mariner, whose service was chiefly in packet ships which sailed from the Kennebec River and conducted a general passenger and freight business along the coast to the West Indies. E. S. Ingraham, when a boy, attended the public schools of Maine until his fifteenth year, and then entered the Free Press office at Rockland and learned the printer's trade.

With an increasing fondness for a literary life and a higher education, he entered the Eastern Maine State Normal School, and graduated that institution in 1871. According to the laws of Maine relating to normal school graduates, Mr. Ingraham then began teaching in the public schools, and at the same time pursued a classical course of study through the Waterville Classical Institute, which he followed for three years until his eyes failed and he had to end his studies.

Educational work in Seattle[edit]

In August, 1875, he came to Seattle, where his half-brother, Andrew Ingraham (who emigrated west in 1849), then resided. Ten days after arriving, E. S. Ingraham was offered the position of principal of the central school and to assume charge of the schools of the city, which then numbered three buildings, six teachers and about 200 pupils. He continued as principal of the dental school for thirteen years, and saw the number of teachers of the city schools increase to twenty-nine and the average attendance to 1,700 pupils. Ingraham was elected by the Republican party as Superintendent of King County Schools in 1876, and re-elected, in 1878 and 1880, serving six years continuously. In 1883, he was appointed Superintendent of Seattle Public Schools, and held the office five years.

After the admission of Washington to statehood, Ingraham was a member of the first State Board of Education, by appointment of Governor Elisha P. Ferry. He materially advanced the educational interests of Washington, was actively connected with state institute work, and was among the first to advocate county institutes by organizing one in King County.

Printing and politics[edit]

In 1888 he retired from educational work and shortly thereafter entered into partnership with UK Coryell and established the printing house of Ingraham & Coryell. They published the Northwest Journal of Education and the Seattle Guide, a monthly publication of general information connected with the city, besides conducting a general job-printing business. Ingraham was a member of the Board of Aldermen for the city of Seattle, serving one term, and in March, 1893, he was appointed by Governor John H. McGraw to the position of Regent of the State Agricultural College and School of Science for a term of four years.

Ingraham was married in Seattle, in April, 1888, to Miss Myra Ada Carr, a native of Oregon, whose parents were pioneers in the early 1860s. They had two sons, Norman and Kenneth Carr Ingraham.

Ingraham's later years[edit]

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Much of the content of the above article is taken from An Illustrated History of the State of Washington, H. K. Hines, D.D., The Lewis Publishing Co., Chicago, IL., 1893.