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The Archivist: Athletic doctor left lasting influence on Oklahoma City schools

Mary Phillips: Dr. H.H. Cloudman initiated physical education classes in Oklahoma City.
BY MARY PHILLIPS Published: January 21, 2013

When Dr. H.H. (Harry Howard) Cloudman arrived in Oklahoma City in 1908, he was already a celebrated athlete and medical doctor. And his work in physical education still affects our state today.

Late last year, Cloudman was posthumously inducted into the Bowdoin College Athletic Hall of Honor in Brunswick, Maine.

He represented the class of 1901 and was recognized as an international track star.

In 1939, he was named one of the Maine college's “greatest athletes of all time.”

The Bowdoin College Athletic Department Web page states: “In the Maine State Meet in 1899 he set a new record of 9.8 seconds in the 100-yard dash, tying the world record. The time was since matched by Howard Mostrum '27 and Gordon Milliken '53, but it has never been bettered. It is the longest-standing athletic record at Bowdoin, and it will not be surpassed, since track and field events transitioned to the metric system in the 1970s.”

In 1909, Cloudman was hired by the Oklahoma City Schools as physical director.

His obituary published in The Oklahoman on Dec. 6, 1950, gave the attributes of the man:

“Known by many generations of city school children, Dr. Cloudman inaugurated physical education in city schools and was the first school doctor.

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