Charles Henderson Jr. ’43

Charles Henderson Jr., 91, a retired professor of classics, died peacefully Sunday, April 19, 2015, at his home in York.

He was born Aug. 22, 1923, in Lynchburg, Va., the son of Charles and Rosalie (Florance) Henderson of Charlottesville, where his father was a professor and later dean of the engineering school at the University of Virginia.

After attending the Middlesex School, he graduated summa cum laude from Davidson College in 1943. Professor Henderson earned masters and Ph.D. degrees in Classics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1947 and 1955 respectively.

On Dec. 31, 1941, Mr. Henderson joined the U.S. Navy, serving as a commanding officer of the U.S.S. Manning (DE 199) in 1946. He later became a captain in the U.S. Navy Reserves.

On Aug. 16, 1944, he married the late Ethel Ann (Bolton) Henderson, daughter of William and Ethel (Gaines) Bolton of North Andover, Mass. Charles Henderson Jr. served as an instructor in classics at New York University from 1950 to 1954 and then returned to UNC – Chapel Hill as an associate professor of classics and subsequently as the dean of student affairs in 1961. He was a professor of Classical Languages and Literatures at Smith College from 1964 to 1968 and the assistant to the president at Smith College from 1972-1978.

On June 15, 2010, he was awarded the honor of the Henry Cabot Lodge ’20 Distinguished Alumnus Award by Middlesex School. In his free time, Charles was an avid banjo player and gardener and for many summers he left his beloved Dabney cottage to sail the Mediterranean Sea.

In 1962, Professor Henderson and Professor B.L. Ullman authored “Latin for Americans,” a widely used textbook that is still in use today in an updated edition and teacher’s guide, that were published by Mr. Henderson in 2003. Mr. Henderson was a member of the American Philological Association, Classical Association of New England, Phi Beta Kappa, Delta Phi Alpha, Sigma Phi Epsilon and Eta Sigma Phi.

He is survived by his five children, Elizabeth Ann (Henderson) Kilduff, Charles Henderson III, William Abbot Henderson, Rosalie Nathan (Henderson) Godfrey, and John Quintus Henderson; and by his sister, Lucy Abbot (Henderson) Wallenborn, of Charlottesville. Additionally, Mr. Henderson is survived by 10 grandchildren; 10 great-grandchildren; and many nephews and nieces.

He was predeceased by his sister, Lydia Bowman (Henderson) Barr.

A private memorial service was held by his family on Father’s Day, June 21, 2015, at his home, with the Rev. Calvin Sanborn officiating.

Memorial donations may be made to the Middlesex School of Concord, Massachusetts.

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