Penn People

William Evans Rogers

1846 - 1913

Penn Connection

  • Member of College Class of 1865 (non-graduate)
  • Member of Philomathean Society, Glee Club, and University Light Artillery
  • Class vice president

William Evans Rogers was born in Philadelphia on April 11, 1846, to William Evans Rogers and Harriette Phoebe Ruggles.

Rogers entered the University in 1861 as a member of the College Class of 1865. He became a member of the Philomathean Society and the University Glee Club. During his sophomore year, Rogers was vice president of his class and ranked second in his class academically. A corporal in the University Light Artillery, he left at the close of that academic year to enter the United States military.

When the Confederate army threatened Pennsylvania during the summer of 1863, Rogers became a private in the First Troop of the Philadelphia City Calvary. Rogers went on to graduate from West Point in 1867. He then served as a second lieutenant in the Army Corps of Engineers until his resignation from the Army in 1869.

After his military years, Rogers entered the lumber business in Detroit, Michigan. Here he helped to organize Presque Isle County, the county seat of which is named Rogers City in his honor. In 1875 he moved to Garrison, New York, (outside New York City) to work as a cotton exporter; in 1883 he was appointed railroad commissioner of that state. Later, Rogers was employed by the Delaware, Lackawanna, & Western Railroad Company.

Rogers married Susan Le Roy Fish, daughter of Hamilton Fish, the governor of New York and former Secretary of State (under President Ulysses S. Grant). William Evans Rogers died on March 10, 1913, in New York City.