Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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RICE, Victor Moreau, educator, born in Mayville. Chautauqua County, New York, 5 April, 1818; died in Oneida, Madison County, New York, 17 October, 1869. He was graduated at Allegheny college in 1841, studied law, and was admitted to the bar, though he did not follow the profession. In 1843 he became a teacher of penmanship and of Latin in the schools of Buffalo, New York, and for some time was the editor of a journal named the "Cataract," which was afterward called the "Western Temperance Standard." He again became connected with the schools of Buffalo in 1846, and was elected superintendent of the city schools in 1852, and president of the State teachers' association in 1853. The legislature having created a department of public instruction in 1854, Mr. Rice was elected the first state superintendent for three years. He was thrice re-elected, filling the office till 1866. In 1861 he was a member of the legislature, and served as chairman of the committee on schools. In 1867 he induced the legislature to abolish rates, making all the schools free. During his first term as superintendent he collected and collated the statutes relating to public instruction, and published them by legislative authority under the title of "Code of Public Instruction" (Albany, 1856). He published a "Special Report on the Present State of Education in the United States and Other Countries" (Albany, 1867).
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