Members Only Area
Bookmark and Share
sidebar menu icon


HENDERSON MALE AND FEMALE COLLEGE. Henderson Male and Female College, in Rusk County, was established on April 5, 1871. From 1873 to 1879 its president was Oscar H. Cooper, a Yale graduate, who acquired college status for the institution. As early as 1873 its enrollment was 160, and the first graduating class received its diplomas in June 1876. That year there were ten faculty members, including J. C. Mizner, who had graduated from the Leipzig Conservatory of Music and had studied under Franz Liszt. Cooper resigned in 1879 to become the first state superintendent of public instruction and was succeeded by Thomas S. Gathright, who had been the first president of the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas (now Texas A&M University).


Garland Roscoe Farmer, The Realm of Rusk County (Henderson, Texas: Henderson Times, 1951). Hans Peter Nielsen Gammel, comp., Laws of Texas, 1822–1897 (10 vols., Austin: Gammel, 1898). Rusk County History (Henderson, Texas: Rusk County Historical Commission, 1982). Dorman H. Winfrey, A History of Rusk County (Waco: Texian, 1961).

Megan Biesele

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:

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.

Megan Biesele, "HENDERSON MALE AND FEMALE COLLEGE," Handbook of Texas Online (, accessed December 01, 2015. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.