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De Jong, Gerald Francis (1921-2001) | Heritage Hall, Hekman Library

Name: De Jong, Gerald Francis (1921-2001)

Historical Note:

Gerald Francis De Jong was born on November 16, 1921 in Carnes, Iowa.  De Jong enlisted in the U.S. Army during World War II. For three years he served as a navigator's assistant on the USS G.O. Squire which brought and returned troops in both the Pacific and European Theaters. Once he returned to civilian life, he entered Northwestern Junior College, graduating in 1948. He went on to Morningside College in Sioux City graduating with high honors. He attended the University of Wisconsin to study European History. In 1952 he got the opportunity to study at the University of Utrecht, the Netherlands on a Fulbright Scholarship.  By 1955 De Jong once again received high honors as he graduated with his Ph.D.

De Jong taught European history at Indiana Central College, Emporia Kansas State College, and North Dakota State College. He also worked as Academic Dean at Northwestern College for five years and then returned to teaching at Midwest College.  The last college he served was the University of South Dakota, Vermillion from which he retired from in 1988. During his career he wrote a number of articles and books, mostly on the subject of Dutch history. He spent his retirement days in Orange City, Iowa and was a member of the Frist Reformed Church. On October 30, 2001 Professor Gerald Francis De Jong passed away in Rock Rapids, Iowa. He was survived by his wife, Jeanette Masselink, and their six children.

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