Born in Grant Co., Indiana, Professor Candy spent his first 17 years on a farm, with very meager schooling opportunities. His first contact with advanced instruction came in 1884 when he entered the Northern Indiana Normal School for two years of study. He then taught Mathematics and Civil Engineering at Campbell Normal University, in Holton, Kansas, from 1886 to 1891, followed by two years (1892-1893) as Professor of Mathematics at Fremont Normal College in Nebraska. From the University of Kansas he received his A.B. degree in 1892 and A.M. degree in 1893.
He came to the University of Nebraska (UNL) as an instructor in 1893. Although his dissertation was completed by 1896 he did not receive his Ph.D. until 1898. This was the first Ph.D. in mathematics from UNL. However, the very first Ph.D. from UNL was to Howard N. Allen (Physics) in 1896. The second was to Roscoe Round (Plant Ecology) in 1897, the third was to A.L. Candy (Math) in 1898 and the fourth (also in 1898) was to Frederic E. Clements (Botany).
Candy was an instructor in 1893, Adjunct Professor in 1900, Assistant Professor in 1903, Associate Professor in 1904 and Professor Pure Mathematics in 1907. He was a member of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science, Mathematical Association of America, American Mathematical Society, American Association of University Professors and Sigma Xi. He was Chair of the Department from 1918-1934 and was Acting Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences from 1922-1923 and 1924-1925. He served for many years as Chair of the Course of Study Committee of the College and as member of the Graduate Council. For four years he was chief advisor to its students during registration.
He served the City of Lincoln as an alderman from 1909-1913 and initiated a number of ordinances useful in promoting civic progress. He served on the Board of Social Welfare from 1902-1927 and as its president for 10 years. He was a member and elder of the First Presbyterian Church.
He married Edna L. McCain on August 24, 1886, but she died on April 23, 1893. He then married Ella Van Brunt on June 27, 1895. He had a son Albert McCain Candy who received his Ph.D. in electrical engineering in 1928.
He is the author of "Analytic Geometry", with editions in 1900, 1904 and 1909. He was the author of articles in scientific journals, wrote books on magic squares and was the inventor of various computing devices.
Retiring in 1934 and continuing as an Emeritus Professor, he remained active in his mathematics work. As he was about to turn 80, a Lincoln Star article of March 11, 1937, announced that he was the oldest UNL faculty member. Hundreds of students and friends were asked to "shower" him with cards and letters. An informal celebration at his home at 1003 H street included Chancellor Burnett, Dean Oldfather and others. The College sponsored a dinner on his behalf. Still at this age he was scheduled to speak on "The Story of the Ten Digits and the Rhind Papyrus" in Social Sciences auditorium under the auspices of Pi Mu Epsilon.
He was viewed as a courteous and sympathetic instructor who firmly upheld the exacting standards demanded by the efficient teaching of mathematics. In his will, he had a bequest of $10,000 to endow a fellowship in mathematics.
Albert Luther Candy
March 12, 1857 - July 18, 1945