Watson Hall is a residence hall in the Alumni
Quadrangle at the University of Connecticut, named after Elmer S. Watson.
Watson, born in Hartford on June 19, 1908 to George and Mabel Avery Watson,
served on the University of Connecticut Board of Trustees from 1945-1965,
as well as serving as the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles from 1945-1949. He
was a state senator from 1951-1959.
Elmer Watson attended the Connecticut Agricultural
College after graduating from Weaver High School. As an undergraduate, he
was a member of Theta Sigma Chi, Theta Alpha Phi, and Gamma Chi Epsilon
fraternities. He was also a member of the Varsity Club, the baseball team,
and the rifle team, serving as captain in his junior and senior years, and for
two years he was a reporter for the Daily Campus. In his senior year
Watson was promoted to major and commander of his ROTC battalion. He graduated
in 1929 with a Bachelor of Science degree.
After college Watson and his brother Arthur formed
the Arthur A. Watson and Company Insurance Agency, where he was a senior
partner. He married Cornelia Williamson, a graduate of Smith College, at
Dobbs Ferry, New York, on September 21, 1935.
In 1930 he joined the Connecticut National Guard
as a second lieutenant and served through all ranks up to brigadier general
in command of the State Guard, a position he held in 1950-1951. During World
War II he served with the Forty-third Division in the South Pacific as
a lieutenant colonel on the General Staff. He earned the Legion of Merit,
Purple Heart, Army Commendation Medal, Pacific Theater Medal with two
battle stars and one bronze arrowhead, the American Theater Ribbon, and
the American Defense Medal. He retired as a major general.
From June 1945 to 1949 Watson was Commissioner of
Motor Vehicles for the State of Connecticut. He was elected to the State
Senate from the Fourth District in 1951, where he served until 1959. He died
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