Fun Facts Friday: Henry Steele Commager

Henry Steele Commager (25 October, 1902 – 2 March, 1998) was a prolific writer, intellectual and historian born in Pittsburgh, PA.

Books by Henry Steele Commager*Books by Henry Steele Commager*

  1. Even though Mr. Commager was born in Pittsburgh, he grew up I Toledo, OH and Chicago, IL.
  2. He earned his degrees in history and PhD from the University of Chicago.
  3. While researching his dissertation on the Enlightenment reform movement in Denmark, Mr. Commager lived in Copenhagen for a year.
  4. As a college professor, Mr. Commager emphasized that historians must write for a wide audience, not other historians.
  5. As a professional historian, Mr. Commager felt a duty to reach out to other citizens believing that an educated public would support liberal programs.
  6. At Columbia University, Mr. Commager mentored several distinguished historians such as Leonard W. Levy, William Leuchtenburg and Harold Hyman.
  7. He believed that the Constitution and the Bill of Rights were meant to create a powerful general government, while recognizing individual rights and liberties.
  8. During his lifetime, Mr. Commager wrote hundreds of essays presenting current events with historical perspective.
  9. He opposed the Vietnam War on constitutional grounds perpetrated by the Nixon administration.
  10. Documents of American History, first published in 1938 and has been published in at least 10 editions, is to this day considered to be a standard collection work of primary sources.

Books by Henry Steele Commager*

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