In 1952, after 29 years as Gettysburg's president, Henry W. A. Hanson retired. He was succeeded by a distinguished European historian, then head of Wagner College on Staten Island, Walter Langsam. Langsam's tenure at Gettysburg was brief, productive, and turbulent. Hanson loyalists found it difficult to accept changes that Langsam believed necessary for Gettysburg to move forward in a new era. Their carping wore him down. In 1955, Langsam accepted the presidency of the University of Cincinnati, where he served for 17 years.