Biography of Elisha S. Loomis
Cuyahoga County, OH Biographies

ELISHA SCOTT LOOMIS, educator, author and man of affairs of Lakewood, was born on a farm in Wadsworth Township, Medina County, this state, September 18, 1852, son of the late Charles Wilson and Sarah (Oberholtzer) Loomis. The father was also a native of the Buckeye State, born in Franklin (now Kent), Portage County, July 12, 1828, and was married in Medina, Ohio, to Miss Oberholtzer, whose birth occurred at Colebrookdale, Berks County, Pennsylvania, January 10, 1833. She was the daughter of Jacob B. and Mary (Renninger) Oberholtzer, a German family of note that has resided in the Keystone State for many generations.

The genealogy of the Loomis family can be traced through but two names, Loomis and Pomeroy, to Henry I of England, through his natural daughter who married the Baron Sir Henry de Pomenine. Charles W. Loomis, father of subject, followed farming in Medina County, Ohio, for a number of years but removed to Henry County, this state, in the fall of 1861. A year later, or in 1862, he again removed, this time locating near Nashville, Holmes County, Ohio, where he died November 14, 1864. His widow passed away in Berea, Ohio, September 20, 1906, and was interred in her lot in Woods ale Cemetery of that town. Following out her expressed wish, her husband's remains were removed to that burial ground and laid beside her in 1907.

Elisha S. Loomis, whose life record is very unusual and remarkable, was the eldest of seven brothers, and was but twelve years of age when his father died. The family soon scattered but Elisha was retained by his mother to assist with the work and to aid her in taking care of the two youngest children. Filled with the ambition to lighten the burden on his mother, young Elisha, when fourteen years of age, secured a place to work and received $3 per month for his services. At the end of two years he had saved $25, and this he immediately put out at interest. His wages were then increased to $6 per month, but he was obliged to wait six months for his pay in full. He was then offered $10 per month and this he accepted although another family offered him $11 per month. The latter he would not accept for the people were rough and irreligious.

After the death of the father the mother rented a two room log cabin for $12 per year, part of the rent being paid by giving some of the father's farming tools. They saw very hard times, and to get wheat for bread often picked up scattered heads of wheat gleaned in the corners after the reapers. Young Loomis or Lumas had, for years, a regular program of going to school three or four months in the winter and working on farms the fest of the year. He must have been a lad of more than ordinary ability for he now holds four college degrees and is professor emeritus of mathematics of an Ohio university.

On the 10th of June, 1880, he was graduated from Baldwin University with the degree of Bachelor of Science; received the degree of Master of Arts at the same institution of learning July 17, 1886; the degree of Doctor of Philosophy from Wooster University June 20, 1888; Bachelor of Laws from Cleveland Law School of Baldwin Wallace University on June 20, 1900, and was admitted to the bar of Ohio at the same date. He also holds the honored title of Professor Emeritus at Baldwin Wallace University. On July 5, 1890, he was granted a high school teacher's life certificate and began teaching. He was superintendent of schools at Shreve, Ohio, from 1876 to 1879; principal of Burbank Academy at Burbank, Ohio, from 1880 to 1881; principal of Richfield Central High School, Summit County, Ohio, from 1881 to 1885; professor of mathematics in Baldwin Wallace University from 1885 to 1895, and from 1895 up to the close of 1923 was head of the department of mathematics in West High School of Cleveland. At the last mentioned date he retired on school pension, having reached the limit established by Ohio law which provides that no teacher of the public schools shall hold position after having reached the age of seventy years. He taught his first school, beginning in April, 1873, and completed his last term of teaching in June, 1923, thus rounding out a full half century of successful teaching, and but for the intervention of the Ohio school law limiting the age of teachers for school teaching he would have continued his school work for an indefinite period, should he have so desired, for his physical and mental faculties are unimpaired, and "his spirit is willing."

Professor Loomis is the author of "Theism, the Result of Completed Investigation," "The Teaching of Mathematics in High School," "How to Attack an Original in Geometry," and also has completed but unpublished manuscript for "One Hundred and Twenty Possible Geometric Proofs of the Pythagorian Proposition"; he is also the author of "The Loomis Family in America" (1838-1908), a volume of 859 pages of genealogy; also author of "The Genealogy of the Oberholtzer Family in America" (now complete in M. S. S.) also of the brochure on "Dr. Mahlon Loomis and Wireless Telegraphy." Doctor Loomis was the first man in the world to send wireless messages, unaided by artificial batteries, such distances as to convince the witnesses present that what he did far surpassed anything theretofore done by any other investigator. Dr. Loomis was at one time a Cuyahoga County citizen, and of the same family of Loomis as is Professor E. S.

He is a member of the National Educational Association, the Northeastern Ohio Teachers' Association and the Mathematical Association of Cleveland. He was made a Mason on February 25, 1885, by Meriden Sun Lodge No. 266, Free and Accepted Masons at West Richfield, Ohio, and is now a member of Berea Lodge No. 382, Free and Accepted Masons, Berea, Ohio. He was made a Royal Arch Mason by Berea Chapter No. 134, May 17, 1889; became a member of Oriental Commandery No. 12, Knights Templar at Cleveland June 28, 1901; Lake Erie Consistory, Valley of Cleveland Ancient Accepted Scotish Rite Masons March 13, 1908, in which he has attained the thirty second degree, and Al Koran Temple, Ancient Arabic Order Nobles of the Mystic Shrine October 28, 1908.

Professor Loomis is active and prominent in the business affairs of Lakewood and has been identified with the organization and conduct of several of its financial institutions. He is a director in the Detroit Avenue Savings and Loan Company, director in the Guarantee Estates Company of Cleveland, director in the Commercial and Savings Bank of Berea, and director in the France Manufacturing Company of Cleveland. He was married on June 17, 1880, to Miss Letitia E. Shire, a native of Hardy Township, Holmes County, Ohio, born April 17, 1856, and the daughter of Henry and Martha Ann (Welch) Shire. Mrs. Loomis is prominent in social circles and is especially interested in Woman's Christian Temperance Union work. To this marriage have been born the following children: Elatus G., who married Miss Zoe E. Clark and they have a daughter, Clara Byrde; Clara Icona married Robert L. Lechner and they have a son and daughter, Robert L. (2d) and Jean.

A History of Cuyahoga County
and the City of Cleveland
By: William R. Coates
The American Historical Society
Chicago and New York, 1924

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