Roby C. Thompson

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Roby Calvin Thompson (March 30, 1898 - July 29, 1960) was a Virginia lawyer and federal judge. He was born in Saltville, Virginia.

Thompson graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law, receiving his LL.B. in 1922.

He practiced law in Abingdon, Virginia, from 1922-1957.

He served as deputy clerk of the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia, from 1928-1938.

He was the Commonwealth's Attorney for Washington County, Virginia from 1939–1947, and town attorney for Abingdon from 1940-1957.

President Dwight Eisenhower nominated Thompson on August 16, 1957, to a seat on the United States District Court for the Western District of Virginia vacated by Alfred D. Barksdale. The United States Senate confirmed the nomination on August 28, 1957. Thompson acted as chief judge, from 1958-1960. He was succeeded on the bench by Thomas J. Michie.

Along with his colleague Ted Dalton and Senior Judge John Paul, Thompson presided over school integration cases in Western Virginia, implementing the Supreme Court's decision in Brown v. Board of Education. Thompson ordered the integration of the public schools in Floyd County, Virginia and Galax, Virginia in 1959 and Pulaski County, Virginia in 1960, noting that more than five years had passed since the Brown decision.[1]


  1. ^ "F. Douglas Wharam, Jr., "Only A Matter of Time" Christiansburg Institute and Desegregation in Southwest Virginia: 1959-1960". Virginia Center for Digital History, University of Virginia. Retrieved February 10, 2008. 

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