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Tarkio College was a college that operated in Tarkio, Missouri, from 1883 to 1992. The institution was supported by the United Presbyterian Church in the United States of America.[1]

Tarkio College
Tarkio College, circa 1910
AffiliationUnited Presbyterian Church in the United States of America
Sportsbasketball, football, baseball, soccer, volleyball, track and field

Coordinates: 40°26′35″N 95°23′32″W / 40.443032°N 95.39234°W / 40.443032; -95.39234

It was closed after filing for bankruptcy protection in 1991 and then was reopened in 2012 as a continuing education institution for professionals.[2]



Samuel C. Marshall was the first president and William E. Walker served as the last president.[2]

The Tarkio College mascot was the owl. The school colors were purple and white, and the college's motto, often attributed to its founder, gentleman farmer David Rankin, was "Set Fire, Tarkio!"[2]

Tarkio College won the first NAIA Division I Men's basketball championship in 1940, defeating San Diego State 52–31.[2] Tarkio College's 's softball team appeared in one Women's College World Series in 1976.[3]

Brewer and Shipley named their most famous album Tarkio after this college in 1970.[4]

One of the school's most famous structures was the Mule Barn Theatre, an octagon-shaped structure used originally to house mules. It was on the National Register of Historic Places but was destroyed by fire in 1989.[5]

After Tarkio College closed, the library books were purchased by and moved to Lancaster Bible College, Lancaster, Pennsylvania. There were also several attempts to find alternative uses for the property, including early discussions about the possible founding of a new institution, Tarkio Valley College. Initially, Youth Services International, Inc. operated Tarkio Academy, a residential and community-based educational program for juveniles between 1995–2004.[6] North Central Missouri College and Linn State College (called State Technical College of Missouri since July 2014) in Linn, Missouri then announced an exploration of options for a new jointly operated technical college in early 2006. This was soon followed by reports that the property would become the Midwest Institute of Energy, a private college.[7] The institute missed its planned opening of 2009.

The Tarkio College Alumni Association preserved the original Tarkio College 1883 corporation and began the process to reopen the college in 2012 with a revised mission of providing continuing education for professionals as mandated for them by various state agencies, licensing boards or accrediting agencies. It does not provide academic credits at this time. Education and training will be available at locations throughout the United States as traditional seminars, online classes, interactive webinars—and also at the home campus in Tarkio, MO. The Alumni Association has rented the main building on the Tarkio campus, Rankin Hall, and is in the process of restoring this 1931 landmark. Robert A. Hughes, Tarkio College Class of 1971, is the current president of the newly reorganized college.[8][9]

Educational recordsEdit

After the college closed, student transcript records were transferred to Northwest Missouri State University, where they can be requested through the Registrar's Office at 800 University Drive, Maryville, MO 64468.[10]

Notable alumniEdit


  1. ^ Williams, Walter (1901). The State of Missouri. pp. 197–210. ISBN 0-9798714-5-X.
  2. ^ a b c d Craig, Cathryn C.; Naylor, Jone (1992). Tarkio College, 1883-1992: "An Illustrated History of the Crown of the Hill". Family First Publications.
  3. ^ Plummer, William; Floyd, Larry C. (2013). A Series Of Their Own: History Of The Women's College World Series. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States: Turnkey Communications Inc. ISBN 978-0-9893007-0-4.
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ Belleville News-Democrat (February 13, 2006). "Old Tarkio College library considered for possible tech college". Belleville News-Democrat.
  7. ^ St. Joseph News-Press & Gazette Company (July 18, 2006). "Former Tarkio College will become energy institute". St. Joseph News-Press & Gazette Company.
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^ NWMSU holds the repository of transcripts from Tarkio college, as well as Platt College. [1]
  11. ^ Hermes, Matthew (1996). Enough for One Lifetime, Wallace Carothers the Inventor of Nylon. Chemical Heritage Foundation. ISBN 0-8412-3331-4.
  12. ^ Center for Oral History. "Carl Djerassi". Science History Institute.
  13. ^ Fisher, Reginald (July 1947). "Edgar Lee Hewett". American Antiquity. 13 (1): 78–79.
  14. ^ Leary, Alex (8 April 2015). "Reliving Marco Rubio's football glory days". Tampa Bay Times. Retrieved 17 November 2015.
  15. ^ "Al Reynolds, G at". Retrieved September 27, 2015.
  16. ^ "The Last Sortie: John H. Eastwood". Archived from the original on April 12, 2013. Retrieved March 20, 2012.
  17. ^ "Stevenson, Neil M. (1930-2009) - U.S. Naval Institute". Retrieved September 27, 2015.

External linksEdit