George Wesley Pedlow (1874-1947)

George Wesley Pedlow (1874-1947)

On August 8, 1874, George Wesley Pedlow was born in Manistee, Michigan. He attended public schools in Upland, Pennsylvania and Dickinson Preparatory School in Carlisle, Pennsylvania before enrolling in the College proper. At Dickinson, he was a member of Sigma Chi and captain of the football team in 1900.

In 1901, Pedlow graduated from Dickinson, and shortly after, he joined the 6th Pennsylvania Volunteers to fight in the Spanish-American War, though the conflict was resolved before his unit arrived in Cuba. After the War, he returned to Pennsylvania, where he served as principal at Dauphin High School for two years. From Dauphin, he went to Staunton Military Academy as an instructor. Five years later he left Staunton and returned to his hometown of Upland to serve as principal at the high school there for two years. In 1910, he left for a teaching position at Chester High School. At Chester High School, Pedlow finally found a more permanent position, serving as a teacher there until 1924, and then as principal from 1924 to 1941.

Throughout his life, Pedlow valued the education that he had received at Dickinson, and as an educator in the Chester School District, he was responsible for directing many students to the College. In 1942, he received an honorary Master of Arts degree from his alma mater.

In addition to serving in professional organizations such as the Philadelphia Suburban High School Principals’ Association, where he was appointed president, and the Philadelphia Suburban Athletic Association, Pedlow was very involved in the Chester community. He was an adviser in the Chester Chapter of the Order of Demolay as well as a member of both the Trinity Methodist Church and the Chester Kiwanis Club.

On January 2, 1947, Pedlow died. He was survived by his widow, the well known artist, Mary Elizabeth Watson Pedlow, and their three children, Elizabeth Pedlow Maginnis and Dr. John Watson Pedlow, both graduates of Dickinson in 1929, and Dr. G. Wesley Pedlow, Jr., a graduate in 1934. Pedlow’s connection to Dickinson was remembered when, in 1972, his children donated $50,000 (towards a total pledge of $150,000) in order to endow a chair. The chair in the education department remained unnamed, as Henry Ford's name had been removed in 1968, and so it was reestablished as the George W. Pedlow Chair of Education.

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Dickinson College Archives
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