JOHN FRANCIS LANNEAU
Born February 7, 1836 Died March 5, 1921
Professor of Physics and Applied Mathematics, Wake Forest
Professor of Applied Mathematics and Astronomy, Wake Forest
Rare soul, so gentle, calm in peace,
So gallant, brave in war;
Like some sweet sage of olden Greece,
Like some unconquered Thor;
In vain our records we shall scan
To find a nobler, truer man.
-John Jordan Douglass,
in "Lanneau Memorial" number of The Wake Forest Student.
Doctor Lanneau's affection for his country and for his beloved Southland was
strong and beautiful. Pointing to "Old Glory" and "The Stars and Bars," that were
stretched at one time side by side in his hall, he said: "The most poignant pain I ever
suffered in my life was to give up both those flags. When the war opened it almost
broke my heart to have to fight against the flag under which I had marched so many
years at the Citadel and when after four years of war I had to see the old
Confederate flag folded for the last time, it pained me beyond words; but if ever I
should have to fight again I should joyfully and cheerfully draw my sword under the
Stars and Stripes of a united country." His devotion to the Lost Cause and its leaders
was especially beautiful and continued to the end of his days. Robert E. Lee was in
his opinion the ideal Christian gentleman. The last letter I received from him
contained a photograph of the great Southern leader and a similar photograph was
found after his death, treasured among the papers in his coat pocket.―Dr. J. H.
Gorrell in "Lanneau Memorial" number of The Wake Forest Student.