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Graham, Edward Kidder, Jr.

by Rosamond Putzel, 1986

31 Jan. 1911–13 Mar. 1976

Edward Kidder Graham, Jr., educator and college administrator, was born in Chapel Hill, the son of E. K. Graham, president of The University of North Carolina, and of Susan Williams Moses Graham. Frank Porter Graham was his cousin. Orphaned at the age of seven, he was raised in the family of his uncle by marriage, Louis Graves, founder and editor of the Chapel Hill Weekly. Graham attended the Chapel Hill public schools, the Asheville School, and Woodberry Forest School in Virginia. He received the A.B. (1933) and A.M. (1934) degrees from The University of North Carolina. For further graduate study, he went to Cornell University, which granted him a Ph.D. in medieval history in 1938. For three years (1937–40) he was assistant to the president of Cornell, and for seven years (1940–47) he was secretary to that university.

Thereafter Graham served on the faculties of numerous educational institutions. At Washington University, St. Louis, Mo., from 1947 to 1950, he was successively dean of students, assistant dean of the faculty, and dean of the faculty. In 1950 he was appointed chancellor of the Woman's College of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, where he remained for six years. From 1956 to 1960 he was dean of the College of Liberal Arts, dean of the College of General Education, and acting dean of the Graduate School at Boston University. He left to become vice-chancellor and dean of the faculty at Denver University. In 1963, Graham was named president of the College Center of Finger Lakes, an organization consisting of seven colleges in northern New York State. Later he was dean of the faculty at Kingsborough Community College in Brooklyn, N.Y. In semiretirement, while pursuing a personal interest in creative writing, he served as consultant for Hampton (Va.) Institute and for New York State University at Albany.

Graham was a president of the Association for Higher Education, a member of the national selection committee for Fulbright awards (1953), a consultant for the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (1953), and an adviser for the National Student Association (1954–56). He was a member of the American Historical Association and of the Medieval Academy of America. Graham was a Democrat and an Episcopalian.

He was married first in 1935 to Elizabeth Ann McFadyen, of Concord, N.C., by whom he had three children: Susan (b. 1938), Julia Graves (b. 1941), and Edward Kidder (b. 1945). His second wife, Elvira Prondecki, survived him when he died in Elsmere, N.Y. He was buried in the old Chapel Hill Cemetery.


Chapel Hill Newspaper, 16 Mar. 1976.

Chapel Hill Weekly, 9 Aug. 1957.

Directory of American Scholars (1957).

Durham Morning Herald, 23 July 1950.

Greensboro Daily News, 10 July 1950.

Greensboro Record, 23 May 1950.

New York Times, 11 July 1956, 31 July 1960.

Raleigh News and Observer, 7 Sept. 1963.

Additional Resources:

"Edward Kidder Graham, Jr." Civil Rights Greensboro. University of North Carolina at Greensboro. (accessed March 20, 2014).

Edward Kidder Graham Papers, 1876-1966 (collection no. 00282). The Southern Historical Collection. Louis Round Wilson Special Collections Library. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.,Edward_Kidder.html (accessed March 20, 2014).

Edward Kidder Graham, Jr. Records, UA 2.4, University Archives and Manuscripts, The University of North Carolina at Greensboro. (accessed March 20, 2014).