This page for the family, with love.
The Alexanders have been free spirited renaissance folk. This page may give some insight to the family background which contributed to my delusions. At a very minimum there is my indulgence in collecting links to the family record as to some degree I feel closer to those who preceeded me by enjoying what they left behind. Biographies for NKG and HBA from Lincolnlibraries.org and bio for Nellie Alexander from askart.com Copyright 2009. Biography for Hubert Griggs Alexander is from Morris Library at Southern Illinois University website Copyright 2007. I linked to these sites in good faith as I did not ask permission to reprint bios. To enhance the content presented here, hopefully someone in the family can hook me up with a good HGA (Grandaddy) photo for the site, and maybe a better Nellie photo too... and suggest stuff I've missed. Lotsa Alexanders yet to be included... this may need a page 2 for the current crop of us.
N.K. Griggs (1844-1910)
Nathan Kirk Griggs was a highly respected politician and statesman in the early history of Nebraska. He was a pioneer lawyer in Beatrice and Gage County beginning in 1867 and served as president of the Nebraska State Senate in 1875. He was being considered for more powerful national political offices, but was viewed as incorruptible and therefore unsuited for such. In order to eliminate his presence in the political arena, he was sent to Chemnitz, Saxony (Germany) as a consul. He took this in his stride and made good use of his time while he was in Europe. He amassed an enormous personal library and discovered that he had real talent as a poet and composer. Upon returning to the United States, he chose to continue his work as a lawyer, this time for the Burlington Railroad. He was often out of town on railroad business, and it was on these road trips that he found the time to compose most of the music found in this collection.Griggs was not only a poet but a musician and singer, publishing music for churches and Sunday schools and a large number of songs in sheet music form.
H.B. Alexander (1873-1939)
Hartley Burr Alexander grew up in Syracuse, Nebraska. He came from a poor family, and worked very hard to put himself through the University of Nebraska. Among other things he waited tables in a Lincoln restaurant. It was there he met Nelly Griggs, an artist and musician and Nathan Griggs' daughter. They were married in 1908. As a student he was considered a "free thinker" and was heavily embroiled in campus politics. He belonged to a "slightly radical group" which was opposed to compulsory military drill, Greek letter fraternities, and the wearing of caps and gowns at commencement. He was an outstanding student, and eventually became chairman of the Philosophy Department at the University. Among other accomplishments, he wrote the inscriptions for the Nebraska State Capital Building and helped with its design. He was a scholar, lexicographer, essayist, poet, teacher, philosopher, and humanitarian. He was also considered an expert on Native American mythology and culture. After the Wounded Knee episode in 1890, he wrote poems (two of his earliest) that sympathized with the Indians. He wrote many dramatizations of Indian legends, nine of which were collected as Manito Masks. When named to the Nebraska Hall of Fame, he was called "Nebraska's Renaissance Man."
N. K. Alexander (1875-1943)
Born in Nebraska on October 11, 1875, Nelly Griggs Alexander studied at the Kansas City Art Institute. She lived in her native state until 1932 and then settled in Claremont, California. She died there on March 5, 1943.
an original Nelly Alexander painting
H.G. Alexander (1909-1998)
Hubert Griggs Alexander (1909-1998) was professor of philosophy at The University of New Mexico. He was the son of Hartley Burr Alexander, Professor of Philosophy at The University of Nebraska and Scripps College, Claremont. He obtained his doctorate in philosophy from Yale University in 1934 and he did post doctorate work in Paris at the Sorbonne. Philosophy appointments being scarce in the Depression, he worked for a year (1934-35) as an archeologist in New Mexico excavating Jemez cave, near Jemez Springs. He was hired at the University of New Mexico as an instructor in 1935, attaining the rank of full professor and serving the Philosophy Department there as chair (1948-65), except for two years spent at Yale as visiting professor. At The University of New Mexico he developed one of the earliest broadcast programs in philosophy for KNME-TV, “Humanities.” This was offered as a distance-learning course and was a two-semester survey of the “ideas and ideals” of western and eastern civilizations. Guest scholars, whom Alexander engaged in interdisciplinary conversation, were a regular feature.
Alexander also developed the Taos Aesthetics Institute. This was held for one week in June at the Harwood Foundation in Taos, New Mexico, with evening sessions and lodging being at the D.H. Lawrence Ranch, which had been acquired by The University of New Mexico. The Institute had several invited lecturers, including artists of all sorts, who focused on a given theme in aesthetics for the week. Again, the dominant feature was interdisciplinary dialogue, not only between the faculty but also between the faculty and students. Alexander’s dissertation was devoted to the problem of time, revised and published as Time as Dimension and History (1945), and followed by Language and Thinking (1967), Meaning in Language (1969), and The Language and Logic of Philosophy (1972). Alexander was active in establishing The New Mexico-West Texas Philosophical Society, and was a lifelong organizer for the local chapter of Phi Sigma Tau, the national honor society in philosophy. He retired in 1975, but continued his support of the local Philosophy Club, Phi Sigma Tau, and the New Mexico-West Texas Philosophical Society up to his death from congestive heart failure in 1998.
Some of the works of my family ancestral history are out there on the web:
Hartley Burr Alexander
Hubert Griggs Alexander
Nathan Kirk Griggs
|Croonings of the Winds|
|Fling Out the Flag|
|Laudings of the Winds|
|Moanings of the Winds|
|Sighings of the Winds|
|Sportings of the Winds|