Ebenezer Kellogg was born in Vernon, Connecticut on October 25, 1789. After graduating as salutatorian from Yale in 1810, he taught for two years at the New London Academy and then went to Andover Theological Seminary where he became licensed to preach. In 1815, he was appointed professor of ancient languages and College Librarian at Williams. As soon as 1817, however, having to leave Williamstown due to bleeding lungs, he moved south for the winter at the advice of his physicians. Kellogg was sick on and off for the rest of his life, and his health finally caused him to resign from Williams in 1844. He passed away two years later.
Kellogg was one of only three professors at Williams until 1827. He became great friends with Chester Dewey (Williams Class of 1806), the professor of Mathematics and Natural Philosophy during these early years. Until he was married, Kellogg lived in West College with students. He called on each room once a day to make sure that the boys were studying. In 1826, he married Susan Coit of New London, Connecticut. He was also active in town affairs, serving as the superintendent of the Sunday school for many years.
Kellogg was a man of strong principles. While it sometimes made him unpopular, students eventually respected him. Upon his death, one student said, “The remembrance of the just is precious.”
Named after Ebenezer Kellogg was Kellogg Hall, a dormitory with recitation rooms that stood in front of the present Jesup Hall.
By Allison Jacobs (Williams Class of 2000)
Durfee, Calvin. Williams biographical annals. Boston: Lee and Shepard, 1871.
Hopkins, Mark. Ebenezer Kellogg: a sermon by Mark Hopkins on his death. Boston, Mass.: T.R. Marvin, 1846.
Kellogg, Ebenezer. “A New Englander’s Impressions of Georgia in 1817-1818: Extracts from the Diary of Ebenezer Kellogg,” edited by Sidney Walter. Reprinted from the Journal of Southern History, Vol. XII, May 1946.