Ward, Joseph(1838–89) minister, educator; born in Perry Center, N.Y. He graduated from Andover Theological Seminary (1868). Known as the "Father of Congregationalism" in Dakota Territory, he founded Yankton Academy (1872) which became Yankton College (1881), the first college in the upper Mississippi River valley. He was president of the college (1881–89) and is credited with establishing the public education system in South Dakota. South Dakota placed his statue in the U.S. Capitol.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.