Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts History

Sauer, Anne

Branco, Jessica

Bennett, John

Crowley, Zachary


Ellis, Fredrick M., "Fish", 1906-1967


Fred M. Ellis (1906-1967), A1929, fondly known as "Fish," served as Chairman of the Physical Education Department at Tufts and director of intramural sports for fourteen years. He is considered to be one of the college's all-time athletic greats and was the first student to earn varsity letters in four sports.

Ellis was born in Norwood, Massachusetts, in 1906. His family moved to the fishing port of Gloucester, Massachusetts,where he gained the nickname "Fish," and then to Medford in 1922.He graduated from Medford High School and entered Tufts in 1925, majoring in Civil Engineering. Ellis became one of the greatest football players ever to attend Tufts, quarterbacking the undefeated team in 1927 and serving as team captain in 1928.He lettered in football, basketball, baseball and track during his undergraduate career, winning All New England honors in each. Following his graduation in 1929, Ellis worked as a teacher and athletic director at Bridgton Academy in Maine. He moved on in 1934 to serve as coach and math teacher in Beverly, Massachusetts, for six years. In 1931, he married his college sweetheart, Dorothea Loughlin. She graduated from Jackson College in the morning; they were married in the afternoon; and then the newly-weds attended the Senior Prom that night. In 1940, Ellis was appointed athletic director, coach, and instructor at Dean Academy in Franklin, Massachusetts. A major in the Army Air Corps from March 1943 to June 1946, Ellis served with the Third Air Commando group in New Guinea, the Philippines, the Caroline Islands, and Japan. Before entering the military, Ellis had been an assistant coach at Tufts and renewed his involvement with the university as assistant professor of physical education and head coach of the football team in 1946.By 1954 he had attained the position of full professorship of physical education and was also coaching the basketball and golf teams, in addition to football. Ellis died unexpectiedly on July 19, 1967, in Burlington, Massachusetts. The Ellis family had lived on campus, at 108 Packard Avenue, until 1960, when they moved to Burlington. The Ellis' two daughters were also graduates of Jackson College.

Ellis Oval is named in Fish Ellis' honor.

Source: VF

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  • The encyclopedia seeks to capture more than 150 years of Tufts' achievements, societal contributions and outstanding alumni and faculty in concise entries. As a source of accurate factual information, the Encyclopedia can be used by anyone interested in the history of Tufts and of the people who have made it the unique institution it is.
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Numeric Entries
Dame, Lorin Low, 1838-1903
Dana, Charles A., 1881-1975
Dana Laboratory, 1963
Daniel Ounjian Prize in Economics,
Davies, Caroline Stodder, 1864-1939
Davies House, 1894
De Florez Prize in Human Engineering, 1964
de Pacheco, Kaye MacKinnon, ca. 1910-ca. 1985
Dean Hall, 1887-1963
Dean, Oliver, 1783-1871
Dearborn, Heman Allen, 1831-1897
Department of Anatomy and Cellular Biology, 1893
Department of Anesthesia, 1970
Department of Art and Art History, 1930
Department of Biochemistry, 1893
Department of Chemistry, 1882
Department of Community Health, 1930
Department of Dermatology, 1897
The Department of Economics, 1946
Department of Medicine, 1893
Department of Molecular Biology and Microbiology
Department of Neurology, 1893
Department of Neuroscience, 1983
Department of Neurosurgery, 1951
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 1893
Department of Ophthamology, 1893
Department of Orthopedic Surgery, 1906
Department of Otolaryngology, 1895
Department of Pathology, 1893
Department of Pediatrics, 1930
Department of Pharmacology, 1915
Department of Physics and Astronomy, 1854
Department of Physiology, 1893
Department of Psychiatry, 1928
Department of Radiation Oncology, 1968
Department of Radiology, 1915
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, 1955
Department of Surgery, 1893
Department of Urban and Environmental Policy, 1973
Department of Urology, 1910
Dental Health Sciences Building, 1969
Dewick, Cora Alma (Polk), 1875-1977
Dewick/MacPhie Dining Hall, 1959
Dickson Professorship of English and American History, 1913
Dirlam, Arland A., 1905-1979
Dog Cart, 1900
Dolbear, Amos Emerson, 1837-1910
Donald A. Cowdery Memorial Scholarship, 1946
Dr. Benjamin Andrews Professorship of Surgery, 1987
Dr. Philip E. A. Sheridan Prize, 1977
The Drug Bust, 1970
Dudley, Henry Watson, 1831-1906
Dugger, Edward Jr., 1919-75
Durkee, Frank W., 1861-1939
Durkee, Henrietta Noble Brown, 1871-1946
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