Born in a log cabin as the eldest of eight children, I had to hire out at age 12 to work for a farmer at $3 per month to help support my family when my father died.
Able to attend a country district school only in the winters, I had to walk seven miles to a town to buy a copy of Ray's Elementary Algebra, because the school teacher knew nothing about algebra.
After earning a college degree from Baldwin University, I taught mathematics and studied civil engineering, and eventually earned a doctorate in metaphysics and social science from Wooster University.
I taught mathematics for 28 years at Cleveland West High School, while also earning a law degree and passing the Ohio bar exam.
I wrote several books on geometry and the teaching of mathematics in high schools, including Original Investigation; or How to Attack an Exercise in Geometry (1901), plus more than a 100 articles on educational, pedagogical mathematical, and genealogical subjects.
So, why should you know about me mathematically...I was the author of The Pythagorean Proposition, a compendium and analysis of about 370 proofs of the Pythagorean Theorem, eventually reprinted by NCTM in 1968 as one of the "Classics in Mathematics Education."
In my self-written obituary, I claimed to have "plowed habit-formation grooves in the plastic brains of over 4000 boys and girls and young men and women" and felt that "Of all honors conferred upon (me) (I) prized the title of 'Teacher' more than any other...."
Elisha S. Loomis (1852-1940)