Friday, March 02, 2007


One of America's most famous historians, Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. died Wednesday. I can't say that I agreed with much of what he wrote as court historian for the Kennedys or his perspective on American history, however I did have the opportunity to spend some time with him some 15 years ago. I was working on my Gaines thesis at the University of Kentucky during my senior year when Schlesinger visited. Dr. Raymond Betts, director of the Gaines Center, pulled a few strings, and was able to arrange a few minutes for me to sit down to interview the visiting historian. Although I was an undergraduate of no consequence, Schlesinger was gracious to me, patiently answering my questions. He even complimented my bow tie, a sartorial indulgence both of us shared. Schlesinger certainly demonstrated the good manners so often lost in discourse today.

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