Ira Condict

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Ira Condict
Ira Condict.jpg
Third President of Rutgers University
In office
30 September 1795 – April 1810
Preceded by William Linn
Succeeded by John Henry Livingston
Personal details
Born (1764-02-21)February 21, 1764
Orange, New Jersey
Died July 1, 1811(1811-07-01) (aged 47)
New Brunswick, New Jersey
Alma mater A.B. 1784, The College of New Jersey (Princeton)
Profession clergyman, professor

The Reverend Ira Condict (February 21, 1764 – June 1, 1811) was an American Presbyterian and Dutch Reformed minister who served as the third president of Queen's College (now Rutgers University) in New Brunswick, New Jersey.

A graduate of The College of New Jersey (now Princeton University), Condict was ordained as a minister in the Presbyterian faith. In 1794, Condict was appointed as Professor of Moral Philosophy at Queen's College in New Brunswick, and subsequently asked to serve as its third president following the resignation of William Linn. Because the college had closed in 1795, Condict served in a pro tempore capacity from 1795 to 1810, dedicating his efforts to providing theological instruction and administering the Queen's College Grammar School (now Rutgers Preparatory School) which remained open during this time. After a difficult fundraising effort led by Condict, Queen's College was reopened in 1807 and he presided over the laying of the cornerstone for the college's Old Queens building on 27 April 1809.


He was born in Orange, New Jersey in 1764 to Daniel Condict/Condit and Ruth Harrison (Source:,[1] (cited here: Jotham H. Condit and Eben Condit, Genealogical Record of the Condit Family, Ward & Tichenor (Newark, NJ, 1916) Page 15 & 19, where nearly all Condicts were indexed as Condit for the authors' convenience). Ira's grandparents were: Mary Dodd & Samuel Condict (often referenced as Condit by the family genealogy authors, Jotham & Eben Condit, but named on Find A Grave in the family memorial of John the Norman ancestor (of nearly all Condits and Condicts) and Peter's cenotaph as Condict, of Morristown, New jersey. Ira's famous Revolutionary War patriot sister, Jemima Condict Harrison(of Daniel, and her spouse Major Aaron Harrison), wrote of American colonial life and of the Boston Tea Party(New Jersey Historical Society).[2]

Ira graduated from the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University) with a Bachelor of Arts (A.B.) in 1784.  After being ordained in 1785 by the Reverend John Witherspoon (then President of the College of New Jersey), Condict accepted a calling to serve as pastor to three Presbyterian congregations under the Presbytery of Newton throughout Northwestern New Jersey—Upper Hardwick (now Yellow Frame in Fredon Township, New Jersey), Sussex Court House (now Newton), and Shappenock.  In 1794, he was installed at the First Reformed Church in New Brunswick, New Jersey[3]:pp.335–336—a calling which soon led to him being appointed as Professor of Moral Philosophy at the nearby Queen's College.  Despite the college closing in 1795, Condict was appointed to serve as President pro tempore and he dedicated his efforts to the Queen's College Grammar School (now Rutgers Preparatory School) which remained open under Condict's leadership.  During his tenure in New Brunswick, Condit was known for operating a private circulating library to which a person could be member by paying a small annual dues.  After his death, the library was sold.[3]:p.289  In 1807, Condict, along with Andrew Kilpatrick, renewed the efforts to reopen Queen's College, securing $12,000 in donations to construct what became Old Queen's (completed in 1823). Shortly after Queen's College reopened, the Board of Trustees offered Condict the full presidency, which he declined, returning to his professorship and to supervise instruction at the college. However, his tenure was short lived, and he died of yellow fever on 1 June 1811 in New Brunswick, New Jersey.[4]

Ira's grave is found here:[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^
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  3. ^ a b Pickersgill, Harold E.; Wall, John Patrick. History of Middlesex County, New Jersey: 1664-1920 (New York: Lewis Publishing Company, 1921).
  4. ^ "Ira Condict, President Pro Tem, 1795-1810". Rutgers University. Retrieved 2007-08-26. Born in Orange, N.J. on February 21, 1764, Condict prepared for the ministry in his hometown and in Newark. He graduated from Princeton in 1784, and received his license from the Presbytery of New Brunswick in 1786. For six years he served as pastor of the Presbyterian Churches of Hardwick, Newtown, and Shappenock before he was installed over the Reformed Dutch Church at New Brunswick in 1794, the position previously held by Jacob Hardenbergh. A tall, muscular man, with black hair and prominent features, Condict labored with zeal and perseverance in conducting the affairs of the church. 
  5. ^