Anne Firor Scott (1921 - ) Bullitt Chair (October, 1986)

United States women’s and southern historian Anne Firor Scott was the third scholar to hold the Bullitt Chair in American History at the University of Washington, occupying the chair in October of 1986.  During her lifetime Scott has also held teaching positions at Haverford College (1957-58), at the University of North Carolina (1959-60), and most recently at Duke University (1962-present).  Scott came of age at a time when women were just beginning to enter the history profession as both scholar and subject.  At both Haverford College and the University of North Carolina, for example, Scott joined all-male departments.  She was the first women to serve as chair of the history department at Duke University and her first publication, The Southern Lady: From Pedestal to Politics, 1830-1930 (1970), pioneered the modern study of southern women's history.  It is still in print today.

Born in Georgia in 1921 Scott earned her undergraduate degree at the University of Georgia in 1941, her M.A. at Northwestern University in 1944 and her Ph.D. from Radcliffe College in 1949.  Besides The Southern Lady, Scott’s other works include One Half the People (1976), co-written with husband Andrew M. Scott, Making the Invisible Woman Visible (1984), Virginia Women: The First Two Hundred Years (1988), co-written with Suzanne Lebsock, Natural Allies: Women's Associations in American History (1992), Unheard Voices: The First Historians of Southern Women (1993), and Pauli Murray and Caroline Ware: Forty Years of Letters in Black and White (2006).  Scott has also edited several volumes, including the American Women’s History Series through the University of Illinois Press, and has published essays, introductions, lectures, and book reviews dealing with the history of American women.
In addition to teaching, Scott has served on President Lyndon B. Johnson's Advisory Council on the Status of Women, as president of the Organization of American Historians (1984), as president of the Southern Historical Association (1989), and has been on the advisory boards of the Schlesinger Library, the Princeton University Department of History, and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.  In 1987, a group of her former students and colleagues established the Anne Firor Scott Research Fund, an endowment to help support students conducting independent research in women's history. Additionally, the Organization of American Historian’s Lerner-Scott Dissertation Prize, awarded annually for the best doctoral dissertation in U.S. women's history, is named in honor of Scott and Gerda Lerner. In 2002 Scott received the Organization of American Historian’s Distinguished Service Award.  Anne Firor Scott is currently the W.K. Boyd Professor Emeritus of History at Duke University.

Sources:  George Mason University’s History News Network, “History Doyens, What They’re Famous For,”

Authored by:
Deborah McNally, University of Washington, Seattle