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Van Bokkelen, Libertus, 1815-1889


Libertus Van Bokkelen, a Protestant Episcopal priest, was teaching at St. Paul’s School in Long Island, New York, when he was appointed the first rector of St. Timothy’s Church in Catonsville, Maryland, in 1845. That same year he founded St. Timothy’s Hall in Catonsville, the first church-sponsored military academy in the nation. In the coming years his educational leadership expanded to include serving as president of St. John’s College in Annapolis, president of the Agricultural School near Bladensburg, and as a Baltimore County school commissioner from 1859. In 1864, Governor Augustus Bradford appointed him as the first State Superintendent of Public Instruction. In response to voter opposition to State control of local educational matters the proceedings of the Maryland Constitutional Convention of 1867 effectively ousted Van Bokkelen as State Superintendent and transferred the role to Normal School Principal M. A. Newell. Although Van Bokkelen’s tenure as an educational leader for the State was cut short, his legacy left a solid foundation for the future growth and development of Maryland’s public education system.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Libertus Van Bokkelen records

 Record Group
Identifier: 001-001-001
Overview Libertus Van Bokkelen was the first State Superintendent of Public Instruction and principal ex officio for the Maryland State Normal School from 1864 until 1867. These records which date from 1889 to 1997 consist of correspondence from Van Bokkelen as well as biographies written about him by staff at St. Timothy’s Protestant Episcopal Church in Catonsville, Maryland, and Towson Archives staff members.
Dates: 1889-1997, undated