John Purdue
Founder of Purdue University

JOHN PURDUE, founder of the Lafayette Agricultural Works and of Purdue University, etc., was born in Pennsylvania in 1802, and when very young was taken by the family in their removal to Adelphi, Ross County, Ohio. From 1826 to 1830 he taught a select school in Piqua County, Ohio, during which time he was enjoying “the happiest hours of his life.”

He first visited Lafayette in 1837, and permanently located here in 1839, forming a partnership with MOSES FOWLER in the mercantile business in the Hanna building on the north side of the square, under the firm name of PURDUE & FOWLER. In 1840 the business was removed to the Taylor corner, now occupied by the Lafayette National Bank.

Afterward MR. FOWLER retired from the business and MR. PURDUE continued until 1848, when the firm of PURDUE, STACEY & CO. was organized, adding a wholesale department. This relation continued until 1861, when the firm of PURDUE, BROWN & CO. was formed, who were subsequent bought
out by CURTIS & EARL.

In 1855 MR. PURDUE engaged in the commission business in the city of New York, under the firm name of PURDUE & WARD. In 1865 he returned to Lafayette, where he remained until his death.

Biographical Record and Portrait Album of Tippecanoe County, Indiana, pg. 681
Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois, 1888

John Purdue Biography at the Purdue University Libraries

Portrait of John Purdue from  Wikipedia

John Purdue Gravesite

Historical Markers

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