Portrait of Charles Augustus Thompson

In the News: Buffalo State Philosophy Professor Spotlights Legacy of Charles Augustus Thompson


Buffalo State Assistant Professor of Philosophy John R. Torrey discussed the life of Charles Augustus Thompson, the first Black graduate of Buffalo State, as part of a 7Life feature segment on WKBW-TV 7 on February 6 titled “The Remarkable Legacy of Charles Augustus Thompson: Buffalo State’s Trailblazing First African American Graduate.”

“He did everything ... literally everything,” Torrey told WKBW reporter Mercedes E. Wilson. “He’s a landmark beginning for what Black excellence looks like at Buffalo State.”

Thompson graduated from Buffalo State—then known as the Buffalo Normal School—in 1880 before embarking on a wide-ranging career that included positions throughout the country as a teacher, principal, chiropractor, ordained minister, and clerk with the U.S. Treasury Department.