Riker, Thad Weed (1880–1952)

Type: Biography

Published: 1976

Updated: June 1, 1995

Thad Weed Riker, historian, was born on November 2, 1880, in Stamford, Connecticut, the son of Thaddeus Weed and Louise Draper (Nesbitt) Riker. He received B.A. and M.A. degrees from Princeton University in 1903 and 1904; during those years he was a special fellow in Latin at Princeton. At Oxford University he received a B.Litt. degree in 1908 and a D.Litt. in 1935. He married Fannie Rhea Preston on June 2, 1923; they had two children. Riker was an instructor in English history at Cornell University for the 1908–09 academic year before moving to the University of Texas in 1909 as an instructor in modern European history. He was promoted to adjunct professor in 1913, associate professor in 1917, and professor in 1923. He was a member of the organization committee on education training in the War Plans Division, general staff, in World War I. He also served as visiting professor of modern history at the University of Chicago in 1931–32 and as special research professor at the University of Texas in 1941. Riker wrote several books and articles, including Henry Fox, First Lord Holland (1911), The Making of Roumania (1931), A Short History of Modern Europe (1935), The Story of Modern Europe (1942), and A History of Modern Europe (1948). He was a member of the board of editors of the Journal of Modern History from 1928 to 1932 and acting editor in 1931–32. He was also a member of the board of editors of the American Historical Review from 1943 to 1948. Riker retired from the university in 1951. He belonged to several professional organizations, among them the American Historical Association, the Société d'Histoire Moderne, and the Royal Historical Society. He was a member of the Episcopalian Church. Riker died in Austin on February 17, 1952, and was cremated in San Antonio.

Vertical Files, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin. Who Was Who in America, Vol 2.
  • Education
  • Educators
  • Social Sciences

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

Anonymous, “Riker, Thad Weed,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed August 11, 2022, https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/riker-thad-weed.

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

June 1, 1995