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History of University of Central Oklahoma
Portrait of Richard Thatcher

Richard Thatcher

President of Territorial Normal School of Oklahoma


Biographical Information
  1846  Born March 23, 1846, Alton, Illinois to Rev. John Wesley Thacher and Virginia Bolls-Thatcher 
  1869  In September married Melissa D. DeFord of Ashley, Il., their 35 year marriage produced five chidlren a son who died in infancy and four daughters Edna, Mae, Blanche, and Ethel. 
  1909  Died November 28, 1909, Edmond, Oklahoma of tuberculosis 

  1866- 1878  B.S. and Masters in Mathematics from McKendree College, IL., graduating with honors, he would leave school to teach and return to finish his degree in 1878. 

  1861  At age 15 he enlisted in the 111th Regiment of Illinois Volunteers of the Union Army as a drummer boy under General Sherman's command. 
  1864  July 22, 1864 Thatcher was taken prisoner and confined to Andersonville Prison. He developed a lung and throat condition while in prison and never fully recovered. 
  1868 ca  Superintendent of City Schools in Severy, Kansas. 
  1887 ca - 1890  Superintentdent of Neodesha Schools, Kansas. 
  1890  Moved to Edmond and purchased Central Hotel
Received appointment to work in Census Bureau in Washington, D.C. 
  1891  Returned to Edmond in the Autumn.
October 15, Appointed "Principal/President " of the Territorial Normal School by the Board of Education 
  1893  Resigned at the end of the 1892-1893 school year but continued on the faculty as Head of the Mathematics Department of the Territorial Normal School until his death 
  1894  May, Principal of the Edmond Schools for the 1894-1895 school year while continuing to teach at the Territorial Normal School 

Awards and Affiliations
  1861 - 1864   Veteran of the Civil War 
    33rd degree Mason, Second Master of Edmond Masonic Lodge 

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