Presentation on theme: "West Point and the Hudson River Valley V. Frederick Rickey Professor of Mathematics United States Military Academy 16 February 2005."— Presentation transcript:
West Point and the Hudson River Valley V. Frederick Rickey Professor of Mathematics United States Military Academy 16 February 2005
Why is West Point where it is?
George Washington and Tadeusz Kościuszko
Professor Baron furnished me with Dr. Hutton's Mathematics, and gave me a specimen of his mode of teaching at the blackboard at the academy. Joseph G. Swift, first graduate of West Point. First use in US?
Eleazer Derby Wood, USMA 1806
Sylvanus Thayer, USMA 1808 Assistant Professor of Mathematics, USMA, 1809-1811 Superintendent, USMA, 1817-1833 “Father of the Military Academy”
Thayer Went to France, 1815-17 Visited the Ecole Polytechnique in France Brought back 1000 technical books, maps, and ideas about teaching
The Thayer Method of Teaching Cadets read; no lectures Every cadet is graded every day Small sections of 10- 12 Sections grouped by performance
Charles Davies (1807-1878) USMA 1815 Dept Head 1823-37 Published 49 books 492 printings/edn’s By 1875 he was selling 350,000 books per year
Some Problems from Davies By the census of 1850, New York had a population of 3087695 upon an area of 46085 square miles: what was the population to the square mile? By what number must 7/9 be multiplied, that the product may be 14/15? If a single rail, of a railroad, be 9 feet in length, how many rails would be required for a road, whose length is 12 mi. 5 fur. 3 rd. 4 yd.?
Robert Parker Parrott, USMA 1824
Delafield rifled 3-inch cannon
Oliver Otis Howard, USMA 1854 Civil War General Founder of Howard University in Washington, DC
Robert Edward Lee, USMA 1829 Taught mathematics as a cadet Superintendent at West Point 1848-1852 Civil War General
Montgomery Meigs, USMA 1836 Built the wings and dome of the Capitol Quartermaster during the Civil War
George Armstrong Custer, USMA 1861 Last in his class The Youngest General
Henry Ossian Flipper USMA 1877 First Black Graduate
George W. Goethels, USMA 1880 Built the Panama Canal
The first Army-Navy football game, 1890. Navy won, 24-0.
Resectioning in 1899 This 1890 copy of Davies’ Algebra and Trigonometry was owned by U.S. Grant (USMA 1903). He was first in the second section and then moved to 5 th in 1 st ─ behind Douglas MacArthur.
Ulysses S. Grant (USMA 1843) applied four times to become an instructor in Mathematics, but was turned down. Prof Church believed Grant’s mediocre performance in mathematics did not qualify him to teach in the department. This demonstrates that it is easier to become President than to become an instructor in the Department of Mathematical Sciences.
Douglas MacArthur, USMA 1903 In my dreams I hear again the crash of guns, the rattle of musketry, the strange, mournful mutter of the battlefield. But in the evening of my memory I come back to West Point. Always there echoes and re-echoes: Duty, Honor, Country. May 12, 1962
Omar Bradley and Dwight Eisenhower USMA 1915
Women at USMA: R-Day 1976 631 applied for the class of 1980 (of 6761) 176 were found qualified 148 offered admissions 116 entered in June 1976 Today 15% of the class are women
87 Women Graduated in 1980
COL Kathi Snook Graduated 1980 1987: MA in applied math 1987-1991: “rotator” in mathematics 1997: Ed.D., Boston University 2002: Retired from the Army
How do you get your hat back?
USMA Mission To educate, train, and inspire the Corps of Cadets so that each graduate is a commissioned leader of character committed to the values of Duty, Honor, Country; professional growth throughout a career as an officer in the United States Army; and a lifetime of selfless service to the nation.