Leigh Smith John Hunt

 Leigh S. J. Hunt was born in Indiana in 1855. He obtained his undergraduate degree through Middlebury College in Vermont via correspondence course. Hunt studied law independently and passed the bar in Indiana. He then taught at public schools in Indiana before moving to Iowa and becoming superintendent of schools at Mt. Pleasant, Iowa (1880) and East Des Moines Independent School District, Des Moines, Iowa (1882). Hunt became the third president (1885) of Iowa State Agricultural College (Iowa State University). His lack of experience and aggressive style of leadership led to conflicts with the students and faculty and he resigned in 1886 after only one year.

Hunt moved to Seattle, Washington, and over the course of his lifetime participated in a wide variety of successful business ventures. He became a newspaper publisher (1886), real estate developer, and president of a bank while in Seattle. Hunt also would operate a gold mine in Korea (1893), grow cotton in Sudan (1904 -1910), and eventually pursue mining, agriculture, and land development in Las Vegas, Nevada (1923 - 1933).

In 1885, Hunt married Jessie Noble (attended Iowa State, 1882) of Des Moines and had two children: Helen and Henry. Leigh Hunt died on October 5, 1933, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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Leigh Smith John Hunt                 

RS 2/3
University Archives, Iowa State University Library