35 years, Edwin Barlow taught mathematics at his beloved Horace Greeley
High School in Upstate New York. For 35 years, thousands of students
passed through his classroom. Yet when he died, he remained as much a
cipher as the day he arrived, for he deliberately shrouded his life in
rumor and mystery.
Teacher of the Year: The Mystery and Legacy of
Edwin Barlow tells the story of a former student’s investigation into
the life of his famous, inscrutable teacher, his only clues being a
litany of myths spanning four decades.
Mister Barlow’s classroom
persona -- demanding, humorous, profound, frightening – had already
built him into a legend. What remained to be discovered was the past he
so carefully guarded, and the method behind his controversial teaching
Here, for the first time, Mister Barlow’s entire past is
revealed. Every question is answered, every rumor dispelled, and every
myth debunked. What remains is a remarkably human tale, of a man whose
dreams were shattered, and how he rebuilt his life to become a unique
force in American educational history.
From the Depression to
World War II and beyond, from the altar of a Massachusetts church to a
tiny classroom in New York, from a tightly knit family of six to the
despair of self-imposed exile, Edwin Barlow's story is a journey of
self-realization and redemption.