John Zachos
1820 - March 20, 1893

Werner's Magazine: A Magazine of Expression, Volume 21
DR. JOHN C. ZACHOS, one of the foremost teachers of and writers on elocution, died at his home in New York, March
20, 1893. He was born at Constantinople in 1820. of Greek parentage. In 1822 his father joined the Greek revolutionary
party, escaping with his family to Greece, where he became a general in the army, but was fatally wounded during the
first year of the war. His mother bought a ship, and, sailing along the coast of Greece, succeeded in keeping out of the
way of the Turks, and thus saved the life of her two children.

When ten years old, young Zachos, with a number of other young Greeks, was brought by Dr. Samuel G. Howe to
America to be educated, there being, at that time, no good schools in Greece. He went to Amherst. Mass., and after five
years was prepared for college He then went to Kenyon. Ohio, and, after being graduated there in 1840 with first
honors, entered a doctor's office in Cincinnati to study medicine. His literary tastes, however, caused him to adopt
literature as a profession, and he joined Horace Mann as an instructor in Antioch College, Ohio.

Dr. Zachos's time was now fully given to rhetoric, oratory and literature He gave Shakespearian readings and courses of
lectures on the English poets. He founded a Shakespearian society, which still flourishes in Cincinnati. He also at this
time wrote and published a number of books.

When the civil war broke out, Dr. Zachos served for some time as surgeon in the army, and also as educational agent
on Paris Island, S. C, being sent there by the New York and Boston Educational Society. He demonstrated, what this
society wished to ascertain, that the negroes were capable of acquiring knowledge. He also drilled a company of them.
After two years of this service, he came North and entered the Unitarian ministry in Boston. At this time he gave a course
of twelve lectures at Lowell Institute, which were highly appreciated, and which established his literary reputation in the
Easr. He received $1,200 for this course. For three years he was professor of oratory and rhetoric at the Meadville, Pa.,
Theological Seminary. He established another society there, which still flourish-sand delights to honor him. In 1872 he
became curator of Cooper Union. He was the private secretary and confidential friend of Peter Cooper until the latter's
death.

Under the name of'' Cadmus," Dr. Zachos wrote much on financial and economic subjects, the articles appearing in New
York papers and in pamphlets. Among his books are:

"
New American Speaker." a collection of pieces for speaking that has had a large sale, being especially notable for its
selections from Shakespeare, Milton, and oratorical writings.

"
Analytical Elocution," an elaborately philosophical work founded upon Rush. Unfortunately this is out of print, but many
later writers on and students of elocution have drawn liberally from this book.
"Zachos's Primary Speaker."

"
Zachos's Phonic Primer," for teaching reading, of which Edward Everett Hale speaks in the highest terms.
Dr. Zachos always displayed powers of eloquence. From boyhood he was noted for fine speaking, and won prizes
whenever he competed. His lectures on elocution, composition, oratory, and debate were notable features of Tuesday
and Saturday evenings at Cooper Union. These lectures were attended by from 100 to 200 persons, a large number of
whom were active members of his class, and had special instruction in oratory and debate. On these occasions Dr.
Zachos gave a short lecture and then made criticisms and offered suggestions, useful not only to the person who has
declaimed or recited, but also to the entire class.

Dr. Zachos's versatility is shown by his genius for invention. He devised the stenotype, an instrument to report speech
and operated somewhat in the way that piano chords are played. Every time the keys are touched, a word, a phrase or
a sentence is printed phonetically. It is noiseless and portable. The machine is patented, and already $10,000 has been
invested. The perfecting of this instrument and an analysis of the English language, Dr Zachos considered the chief
works of his life.

According to Dr. Zachos, what is needed in elocution is a skillful combination of the methods of Rush and Delsarte. He
believed that the elocutionary profession is improving and that we have better teachers now than ever before. He also
believed that oratory is imperishable; that its days are not over, as some assert. While the newspaper has its mission, it
can not supplant oratory, eras of revolution and of public excitement will bring it out now as in the old days of Greece.
Dr. Zachos had much of the classic Greek about him, both in brain and in temperament. He was a member of the Ohio
Society of New York, of the Twilight Club, and of the Beta Theta Pi, being one of the founders of this society at Kenyon
College. He was well known as an extemporaneous speaker on both serious and social occasions. His long years of
labor in the elocutionary field: bis scientific investigations and the great influence he exerted for years in the education
of young men and women; his talent for oratory; his critical lectures on the poets, which have won him recognition from
such men as Emerson, Lowell, and Bryant; his literary attainments extending over a wide field, including philosophy,
mathematics, metaphysics and various scientific branches; made him a conspicuous figure in the elocutionary world.
At its recent convention in New York, Dr. Zachos was unanimously elected an honorary member of the National
Association of Elocutionists. In making the nomination, Prof. Robert I. Fulton said: "At each annual convention for the
past three years it has been our privilege to elect some venerable and honored elocutionist as honorary member of our
Association. It is eminently fitting that we thus recognize the conspicuous service rendered by the fathers of our
profession. They have blazed the forests and laid the foundation-stones upon which we have builded, and their deeds
make up the history of our glorious past. We revere the memory of our first honorary president, the beloved James E.
Murdoch, who has entered the confines of 'that undiscovered country from whose bourn no traveler returns.' We catch a
no less significant inspiration from contact with our living honorary members. We are encouraged and strengthened by
the kindly greetings which come each year from Alexander Melville Bell of Washington. D. C, whose system of 'Visible
Speech' has made it possible for even the dumb to speak; we have been lifted to the ethereal heights of the Delsarte
philosophy by the eloquent words of Dr. William R. Alger of Boston, a leading minister among great ministers and a
profound scholar among great scholars; and we rejoice in the wise counsel and living presence of that 'accomplished
son of an illustrious father,' our own Francis T. Russell, who wears with rare dignity and grace the laurel of third
honorary member in addition to his splendid voluntary service as active member. But to day I wish to add to this honored
list the name of one who was born of that nation which nurtured a Phidias and a Demosthenes, but who, early in life,
chose our own fair America as his adopted country and became one of New York's most gifted scholars and teachers;
who gave us the best analytic text book of elocution of his time, when such a book was needed; and who for over fifty
years has stood for the loftiest ideals in expression, himself a successful illustrator of his own theories. For more ;ban a
quarter of a century a lecturer at Cooper Institute in this city, thousands of his pupils throughout the length and the
breadth of our land 'rise up and call him blessed.' He is represented here by his accomplished daughter and pupil, who,
as a valued member of our Board of Directors, has sat in our councils since the birth of our Association. Present,
doubtless, in spirit, he is not with us in person, for the infirmities of age have bent his back and shortened his step; and
today the summer ocean breezes of his suburban home are playing with his silver locks and whispering of the crystal
waters of another Home not far away. I now have the honor to place in nomination for our fourth honorary member the
name of Dr. J. C. Zachos, of New York."

During Dr. Zachos's protracted illness, Miss M. Helena Zachos, his gifted daughter, ably carried on his work at Cooper
Union.

The funeral took place from the Church of the Messiah, Rev. Dr. Robert Collyer officiating. After extolling the lifework
and noble character of the deceased, Dr. Collyer said: "This man was chosen for his post at Cooper Union by its
founder, one of the wisest and best of our citizens. I call him St. Peter. The youth of our city were as his sons and will
remember him with respect and love."

Among the pall-bearers were ex-Mayor Strong, b. S. Packard, A. D. Juilliard, Henry L. Burnett, and Andrew J. C. Foyd.

The Beta Theta Pi, Volume 25
John C. Zachos, Cincinnati, '42, died in New York City, March 20, 1898. We clip from the New York Tribune of March 21
the following brief account of his career. Dr. Zachos was a noble specimen of an open-hearted, broad-minded man. His
fine, kindly face and pleasant smile was often seen at our Beta meetings, and we shall miss his oft-repeated exposition
of the meaning of B 0 n:

Dr. John Calivigeros Zachos, who has been curator of Cooper Union for the last twenty-seven years, died yesterday at
his home, No. 113 West Eighty-fourth street. Dr. Zachos was born in Constantinople, Turkey, in 1820. Both his parents
were of pure Greek blood and natives of Athens.

After the war of the revolution of 1824 in Greece was over Dr. Howe, who at that time brought many Greek boys to this
country to educate them, brought Dr. Zachos to America and placed him in a preparatory school at Amherst, Mass. Dr.
Zachos received his preliminary education at this school, and afterward was graduated in the class of 1840 from Kenyon
College at Gambier, Ohio.

Following his graduation Dr. Zachos studied medicine at Cincinnati, Ohio, but at length determined to adopt literature as
his life's work, and became a lecturer and teacher. Horace Mann at this time was principal of Antioch College, at Yellow
Springs, Ohio, and Dr. Zachos went with him as assistant principal, a place which he held for a number of years. At the
outbreak of the war Dr. Zachos enlisted under
General Saxton, got a commission as surgeon in the army and was
stationed at Paris Island, S. C, of which island he was practically governor during the Rebellion.

The question as to whether or no the negro was capable of receiving education was at this time agitating the country,
and the Boston Bureau of Education decided to experiment on a number of negroes in order to settle definitely the
question one way or another. These experiments were entrusted to Dr. Zarchos, and he was able to show that the
Africans could be educated.

At the close of the war Dr. Zachos studied for the ministry, and was ordained a Unitarian minister, and was later
connected with the theological seminary at Meadville, Pa. In 1871 he came to New York City as curator of Cooper Union,
which position he had held continually since. He formed an intimate friendship with Peter Cooper during the latter's last
years, and there was great harmony of thought and intent between the two in relation to the policy of the Union.
While in Cincinnati Dr. Zachos married Miss Harriet Canfield, but was a widower at the time of his death, as Mrs. Zachos
died two years ago. Three children survive him—Mrs. A. W. Dodd, who married Lieutenant Dodd, of the navy; Miss
Helena Zachos and Robert H. Zachos.

Dr. Zachos was best known as the educator of the young, and thousands of persons in this city who received their
education at Cooper Union will learn of his death with a feeling of personal loss. A friend of his said yesterday: "He was a
man of lovable nature and genial and kindly temperament, with a mind of the most classical Greek type."
The New York Herald of the same date gives some additional particulars as follows:

Literature was the profession adopted by Dr. Zachos early in his life in America. He was an authority on English, besides
being noted for his talent as an elocutionist. Chief among his works are the "New American Speaker" (1852), "Analytical
Elocution" (1861), "New System of Phonic Reading" (1863), and "Phonic Primer and Reader" (1864). He also edited the
Ohio Journal of Education in 1862. The stenotype, for printing a legible text from the English alphabet at a reporting
speed, was invented and patented by Dr. Zachos in 1876.
Peter Cooper
Coopers Hall
(February 12, 1791 – April 4, 1883)
Horace Mann
Education Reformer
(May 4, 1796 – August 2, 1859)
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