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John Payne

LOWMAN, HARMON LUTHER (1894–1964). Harmon Luther Lowman, teacher and school administrator, the son of Quincy Joseph and Mellie (Scott) Lowman, was born on November 30, 1894, at Staples, Texas. He was a student at Coronal Institute in San Marcos from 1909 until 1911. He was enrolled in a prelaw course at Washington and Lee University from 1915 until April 1917, when he volunteered for military service. Lowman served with the 345th Field Artillery, Ninetieth Division, in the American Expeditionary Forces and attained the rank of first lieutenant. After World War I he accepted a position as replacement teacher in Staples and decided to devote his life to teaching.

He received a B.A. from Southwest Texas State Teachers College (now Southwest Texas State University) in 1924, an M.A. from the University of Texas in 1925, and a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in 1930. He was director of the Demonstration School and professor at Stephen F. Austin State Teachers College (now Stephen F. Austin State University) from 1925 until 1936, superintendent of the Livingston, Texas, schools in 1936–37, and superintendent of the Goose Creek district (Baytown) schools; from 1937 to 1940 he was president of Lee Junior College (now Lee College). In 1941, after serving for a year as executive secretary of Southern Methodist University, Lowman became president of Sam Houston State Teachers College (now Sam Houston State University).

During the twenty-three years that Lowman was president of Sam Houston, enrollment increased from 1,200 to 5,200, the annual budget grew from $448,000 to $6 million, and the value of college buildings increased from $1,118,000 to $21 million. In addition to promoting the school's growth, Lowman was concerned with the welfare of students, especially those in financial need. He often helped poor students with his own money and at times took students into his home so that they could remain in school. In recognition of his generosity, in 1963 the board of regents named the new student union building the Lowman Student Center.

Lowman married Marguerite Hightower on April 6, 1918. They had two sons. Lowman was a member of the National Education Association and the Texas State Teachers Association. He was author of History of Teacher Training in the Gulf States (1930). He died on January 26, 1964, and was buried in Oakwood Cemetery, Huntsville.

East Texas (publication of the East Texas Chamber of Commerce), June 1948. Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.

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The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

Handbook of Texas Online, John Payne, "LOWMAN, HARMON LUTHER," accessed July 11, 2020, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/flo41.

Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
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