David McCullough

David McCullough is an author, narrator, historian, and lecturer. He is a two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, and Francis Parkman Prizes. He has also earned the Los Angeles Times Book Award, New York Public Library's Literary Lion Award, the Saint Louis Literary Award from the Saint Louis University Library Associates, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor in the United States. He has been awarded more than 40 honorary degrees including from the Eastern Nazarene College in John Adams' hometown of Quincy, Massachusetts.

While working at American Heritage magazine as an editor and writer, McCullough wrote in his spare time. The Johnstown Flood, a chronicle of one of the worst flood disasters in United States history, was published in 1968 to high praise by critics. John Leonard, of The New York Times, said of McCullough, "We have no better social historian”. He decided to become a full-time writer, encouraged by his wife Rosalee.

Other books authored by McCullough include The Path Between the Seas (1977), 1776 (2005), In the Dark Streets Shineth: A 1941 Christmas Eve Story (2010), The Greater Journey (2011), and The Wright Brothers (2015). His most recent book is The American Spirit: Who We Are and What We Stand For (2017).

McCullough has also narrated numerous documentaries directed by Ken Burns, including Emmy Award winning The Civil War, Academy Award-nominated Brooklyn Bridge, Liberty, and The Congress.

His two Pulitzer Prize-winning books, Truman, and John Adams, were adapted by HBO into a TV film and a miniseries, respectively.

Articles by this Contributor

The Statue of Liberty has been glorified, romanticized, trivialized, and over-publicized. But the meaning of “Liberty Enlightening the World” is still everything.  Read >>
American artist Augustus Saint-Gaudens finds inspiration in France to create one of America’s most iconic sculptures, a memorial to Civil War hero Adm. David Farragut Read >>
Learning about history is an antidote to the hubris of the present, the idea that everything in our lives is the ultimate. Read >>
When John Adams set out with his little son on a perilous voyage early in 1778, he was full of misgivings. He had every right to be worried, but the journey turned out to be the adventure of his life—and a revelation of his essential character. Read >>
Thus did Franklin Roosevelt characterize the man who was to be his running mate in 1944 and—as everyone at the astonishing Democratic Convention knew—almost certainly the next President of the United States. Here is FDR at his most devious, Harry Truman at the pivot of his career, and the old party-boss system at its zenith. Read >>
A noted historian’s very personal tour of the city where so much of the American past took shape—with excursions into institutions famous and obscure, the archives that are the nation’s memory, and the haunts of some noble ghosts Read >>
Harry Truman’s lifetime correspondence with his adored Bess opens a window on their time Read >>
THE EXTRAORDINARY ORIGINAL DRAWINGS OF THE BROOKLYN BRIDGE Read >>
Mile for mile, it cost more in dollars—and lives—than any railroad ever built Read >>
Harriet Beecher Stowe, an extraordinary member of an extraordinary family, always claimed that God wrote Uncle Tom’s Cabin Read >>
The Big Ditch had so far been a colossal flop, and Teddy Roosevelt desperately needed an engineering genius who could take over the job and “make the dirt fly.” The answer was not the famous Goethals, but a man whom history has forgotten. Read >>
In the name of progress one of New England’s most historic and unusual urban areas is being carved into parking lots Read >>
In the hills of Kentucky a small-town lawyer named Harry Caudill battles to save his homeland from the ravages of strip mining Read >>
Newport it was not; but to judge by its summertime throngs, its religious fervor, and the exuberance of its architecture, there was nothing to match the likes of the “Cottage City of America.” Read >>
In the hills above Johnstown the old South Fork dam had failed. Down the Little Conemaugh came the torrent, sweeping away everything in its path Read >>
One thing was clear through the rain and the mist: America’s enthusiasm for Miss Liberty matched her colossal dimensions Read >>

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