Rev. Ernst Fredrick Pihlblad, D. D., president of Bethany College, is an educator of long and successful experience and had been connected with Bethany College more than twenty years.
He was born at Kansas City, Missouri, March 18, 1873, a son of John and Louise (Nord) Pihlblad. Both parents were born in Sweden. His father came to America in 1869. He followed merchandising all his active career, and lived at Kansas City, Missouri, and at Lindsborg and Marquette, Kansas. His death occurred March 14, 1889. In 1872 he married Miss Nord, and they were the parents of two sons. The younger is Dr. Arvid Pihlblad, who was born February 20, 1875, and is a successful physician and surgeon of Lindsborg.
The Reverend Doctor Pihlblad had his early training in the public schools of Kansas City, Missouri, and in 1891 was graduated A. B. from Bethany College, being a member of the first class completing the required college course leading up to the degree A. B. He then entered the Swedish Lutheran Seminary at Rock Island, Illinois, where he continued his studies in theology and in 1894 was ordained to the Swedish Lutheran ministry.
In 1895 Doctor Pihlblad was granted the Master of Arts degree by Bethany College, and from that year until 1904 served as instructor in Latin at Bethany. Since 1904 he had held the chair of president of the college and is also professor of philosophy. The year he was elevated to the presidency he was granted the degree Doctor of Divinity by Augustana Theological Seminary of Rock Island, Illinois.
Doctor Pihlblad was married July 5, 1894, to Miss Marie Sjostron, of Brooklyn, New York, but a native of Sweden, where she was born February 28, 1875. Mrs. Pihlblad is also a graduate of Bethany College, having finished her course with the class of 1893. She is now Dean of Women at the college. Doctor Pihlblad was a member of the Kansas State Text Book Commission in 1912-13, and is widely known among Kansas educators. He and his wife are the parents of two sons: Terence, born February 20, 1898; and Helge, born May 20, 1900.