Thomas Keith Marshall

Miner, Student and Natural Leader

Thomas Keith Marshall. Photo courtesy Special Collections, University of Arizona Library. Athletics football, 1900 N-10, 868.
Thomas Keith Marshall. Photo courtesy
Special Collections, University of
Arizona Library. Athletics football, 1900
N-10, 868.

Thomas Keith Marshall was born in eastern Kansas in 1870. His father died of tuberculosis when Tom was six, his mother had remarried twice by the time he was fifteen. Tom had been on his own and self-supporting for some years and working as a miner in Mammoth, Arizona, when he decided to come to Tucson to further his education. The University had an excellent School of Mines, but first he needed a high school education.

It must have taken courage and determination to be in the preparatory section where so many students were half his age. He was handsome and personable, energetic and physically strong from years of manual labor. He had a restless nature and could visualize projects with great enthusiasm, but preferred to leave to others the detailed work that would bring it to a successful conclusion. Both his attendance record and his grades reflect his interest, or lack of it, in a particular subject.

As a well-liked older student, he was a natural leader, a first-rate debater; a member of the first (1899) and second (1900) football teams; a cadet, sergeant, and an officer (1902) in the military unit on campus.

As a member of the University Club, Tom gave a speech describing the Alaskan Gold Rush and mining in Alaska from his actual experience and observation of mining there. The club members and the activities are listed in the '03 Burro, the first University of Arizona yearbook.

One of Tom's interests was photography and he was very good at it. Most of the pictures in this book of the campus and University Neighborhood were taken by him from 1899 to 1920. There are many more of Tucson, other Arizona towns, California, New Mexico and Colorado.

Old Main Chem lab
Chemistry class in Old Main. This room is the chemistry and mineralogy laboratory
on the northeast comer of the lower floor of Old Main. The windows are to the back
of the photographer who is facing west toward the arches. These arches opened on
an interior hallway that crossed the center of the building. At best there was very little
light in the room, particularly in the afternoon. The foreground pole is in the center of the
square room. This rather poor picture is from a small snapshot in Tom Marshall's photo
album. In June 1990, Phyllis Ball identified the location and said it is a rare photo because
it showed the arches. They were soon closed. This photo location is to the right of the lab in
plate 66 on age 38 of A Photographic History of the University of Arizona by Phyllis Ball. TKM
Surveying Class
1903 Surveying class is assembled beside Old Main with their instructor George
E. P. Smith. No names are listed on Tom's copy of the picture; he may be the man
in military uniform, left front. This picture is also reproduced in the 1903 Burro. In the
fall of 1901 many students wanted to take surveying but no instructor was available.
Professor Guild recommended Smith whom he had known at the University of Vermont.
Smith was sent a telegram, wanted to see the West, so came immediately. TKMPC


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