Another Light on the Hill Black Students at Tufts

Edward "Eddie" Dugger

Edward “Eddie” Dugger is considered to be one of Tufts’ greatest and “most versatile athlete.” During his four years at Tufts Dugger excelled in his mechanical engineering courses and set national records in track. In 1940, he set an American and NCAA record of 13.9 seconds for the 120-yard high hurdle run; this record stood undefeated until 1966. Dugger continued his athletic career after his graduation from Tufts and in ’44, ’45 and ’46 he won the National AAV hurdles indoor championship. In 1948, Dugger came in 4th place during the Olympic tryouts. This marked the end of his athletic career.

Three days after his graduation from Tufts, engineering class of 1941, Dugger accepted a position as an aeronautical engineer for the Airforce base in Dayton, Ohio. There, he served for 33 years as chief of scientific storage and retrieval, testing and designing aircraft and other equipment for the U.S. Armed Forces. Dugger was one of the first African American aeronautical engineers in the country. He retired at age 52, but continued to be an outstanding member of his church and a referee for local basketball and football games. He was a 33 degree Mason of the Prince Hall and a Grand Master for the state of Ohio.

Dugger married Wertha Vivian Reid, from Dayton, Ohio, in 1943, and had three children. At the time of his death in 1975, at age 53, Tufts sponsored a memorial service for him in Goddard Chapel.

Biography written and researched by Alejandra Garcia.

Vertical File Collection. Vertical files, D. Dugger, Edward Jr. E41 1971 -- 1975. UA073.004.VF.00593. Tufts University. Digital Collections and Archives. Medford, MA.