Meigs, Josiah

Meigs, Josiah

(1757–1822) lawyer, educator, public official; born in Middletown, Conn. A Yale graduate (1778), he returned to Yale as a tutor (1781–84), meanwhile helping to launch and edit the New Haven Gazette (1784–88), which published the "Hartford Wits." Admitted to the bar in 1783, he practiced law in Bermuda for several years before becoming professor of mathematics and natural philosophy at Yale in 1794. Disputatious and difficult, he left Yale for the presidency of the University of Georgia (1801–10). He was not lamented when he resigned that office in 1810. Appointed surveyor general of the U.S.A. in 1812, he was a founder of the Columbian Institute, later George Washington University.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.