Elise Trowbridge Ford Knapp, a lifelong scholar of English literature, died Sunday, October 21, 2018 at her home in New Haven. Elise was born in Honolulu, HI, July 1, 1924 to the late Brig. Gen. William Wallace Ford and Alice Trowbridge Harris Ford. Following her father’s many army postings, she had attended schools in seven states by the time she entered Duke University in 1940. She married Robert Phineas Knapp, Jr. of Manchester, CT at Fort Sill, OK in 1943 and moved to New York after the war, where Elise became the first married student at Barnard College. She graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa in 1947.† After living fifteen years in Port Washington, NY, the family moved to Redding, CT, where Elise remained active in community affairs. She earned a Master’s from Western Connecticut State University in Danbury, CT in 1971 and a PhD in English from Columbia University in 1975. She taught at the English Department at WCSU from 1970 to 1997, and was department chair from 1978 to 1983. Predeceased by her husband in 2000, Elise is the mother of David M. Knapp (Pan), Michal Brownell (Bart), Robert P. Knapp III (Eun Soo) and Frederic H. Knapp (Donald). Elise is also survived by brothers Trowbridge and John Ford, 12 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren. Burial was private. A memorial service will be held on Saturday, May 11, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. at the New Haven Friends Meetinghouse, 225 East Grand Ave., CT New Haven, 06513. A reception with food and drink will follow after the service.
If you would like to make a gift in memory of Elise, please give to:
American Friends Service Committee:
Mail: AFSC Development, 1501 Cherry Street, Philadelphia, PA 19102
(for online tributes, please visit https://tinyurl.com/y9bqhnen)
Barnard College (Class of 1947):
Mail: Barnard College, Box AS, 3009 Broadway, New York, NY 10027
(for online tributes, please visit https://tinyurl.com/y7vzspgu).