- Get Involved
FAIRCHILD, THORNTON MCNAIR
FAIRCHILD, THORNTON MCNAIR (1875–1941). Thornton McNair Fairchild, black educator and businessman, was born in Houston, Texas, on December 14, 1875. He was the son of Robert Fairchild and Amanda (McNair) Fairchild. He received his early education in the Houston public schools and later attended Prairie View College (now Prairie View A&M University). He served for a time as principal of black high schools in Navasota and Hempstead and taught in the Houston public schools for a number of years. In 1899 he married a woman named Mary. Early in his business career Fairchild established a funeral home, which by the 1940s was recognized as one of the oldest and best-equipped black mortuaries in Texas. He also founded the Watchtower Life Insurance Company, which became one of the leading black insurance companies in Texas, and served as its president and major stockholder. Fairchild attended Trinity Methodist Episcopal Church in Houston and was a member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the Houston Negro Chamber of Commerce. He died in Houston on December 22, 1941, and was buried in Oak Park Cemetery in that city. After his death his wife gave a major donation to Houston College for Negroes (now Texas Southern University), where the oldest building on campus was named in his honor.
Andrew Webster Jackson, A Sure Foundation and a Sketch of Negro Life in Texas (Houston, 1940).
Image Use Disclaimer
All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.
For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.Handbook of Texas Online, Diana J. Kleiner, "Fairchild, Thornton McNair," accessed February 20, 2018, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/ffa29.
Uploaded on June 12, 2010. Modified on February 9, 2017. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.