Durant, Henry Fowle (dŏrăntˈ, dyŏ–) [key], 1822–81, American lawyer and educator, b. Hanover, N.H., grad. Harvard, 1841. Christened Henry Welles Smith, he adopted the name Durant (1851) because he felt there were too many lawyers in Boston named Smith. After the death of his son (1863) he abandoned the law and became an evangelist. In 1870 he obtained a charter for Wellesley College and from that time on devoted himself completely to the college, of which he was officially the treasurer.
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