About Lehigh

Henry Coppee

(1866-1875)

Henry Coppee worked as a railroad engineer in Georgia, served as a captain in the Army during the Mexican War, and taught at West Point and the University of Pennsylvania before becoming Lehigh's first president in 1866. During Coppee's tenure, much building was done on the new campus. A Moravian church on Packer Avenue was remodeled into Christmas Hall; a house for the president was erected; and Packer Hall, the university center, was built. Coppee lectured in history, logic, rhetoric, political economy and Shakespeare.