Thornton, Robert Y.

Identity area

Type of entity


Authorized form of name

Thornton, Robert Y.

Parallel form(s) of name

Standardized form(s) of name according to other rules

Other form(s) of name

Identifiers for corporate bodies

Description area

Dates of existence



Robert Young Thornton was born in Portland, Oregon, in 1910. He earned a bachelor's degree from Stanford University in 1932. He then studied law at the University of Oregon, completing his law degree at George Washington University in 1937. He met Dorothy Marie Haberbach while at the University of Oregon, and they were married in Washington, D.C., in 1937. They later had one child. Thornton worked various political jobs in Washington, D.C., for a few years, then he returned to Oregon and practiced law in Tillamook. He joined the Reserve Officer Training Corps while at Stanford, and in 1941 he joined the U.S. Army, where he studied Japanese and used his language skills to teach others and conduct interrogations of Japanese prisoners of war during World War II. After his discharge in 1946, he returned to his law practice in Tillamook. He continued to occasionally do intelligence work for the U.S. Army. Thornton, a Democrat, represented Tillamook County in the Oregon House of Representatives from 1951 to 1952, and then served as attorney general for Oregon from 1953 to 1967. In 1962, he was the Democratic nominee for Oregon governor, but was defeated by Republican Mark Hatfield. A few years after the end of his 16-year term as attorney general, he served as a judge on the Oregon Court of Appeals from 1971 to 1983. He died in 2003.


Legal status

Functions, occupations and activities

Mandates/sources of authority

Internal structures/genealogy

General context

Relationships area

Access points area

Subject access points

Place access points


Control area

Authority record identifier


Institution identifier


Rules and/or conventions used


Level of detail

Dates of creation, revision and deletion



Maintenance notes

  • Clipboard

  • Export

  • EAC

Related subjects

Related places