ND historian Father Miscamble receives Truman Award

Author: Arts and Letters


“From Roosevelt to Truman: Potsdam, Hiroshima, and the Cold War,” by Rev. Wilson D. Miscamble, C.S.C., professor of history at the University of Notre Dame has received the 2008 Harry S. Truman Book Award from the Harry S. Truman Library Institute for National and International Affairs.

The award recognizes the institute’s selection of the best book published within a two-year period that deals with some aspect of the public career of Harry S. Truman or the history of the United States during the Truman presidency. An earlier book by Father Miscamble, “George F. Kennan and the Making of American Foreign Policy,” received the Truman Book Award in 1994.

“I am very honored to receive this award,” Father Miscamble said. “My book examines a crucial period in the Truman presidency and helps explain the major transformation in American foreign policy during it. I’m grateful to the staff and benefactors of the Truman Library, whose valuable resources and generous support of my research helped make the book possible.”

“We believe that Professor Miscamble’s book will become a standard work on the origins of the Cold War,” said Jeffrey Gall, chair of the award selection committee. “It directly challenges the argument held by some historians that Truman’s actions as president represented a sharp break with the diplomatic policies of his predecessor, Franklin D. Roosevelt, that he was reckless in his dealings with Stalin and the Soviet Union, and that he unnecessarily provoked the Soviet dictator and helped bring on the Cold War. ‘From Roosevelt to Truman’ is a critically important addition to the historiography of the Cold War that will figure importantly in the historical debate about this period in American history for years to come.”

A priest of the Congregation of Holy Cross, Father Miscamble was ordained in 1988 and joined the Notre Dame faculty the same year. He served as chair of the history department from 1993 to 1998. Most of his teaching and research concerns American foreign policy since World War II and the role of Catholics in 20th century American foreign policy. He also is the author of “Keeping the Faith, Making a Difference,” editor of “Go Forth and Do Good: Memorable Notre Dame Commencement Addresses” and co-editor, with John Marzalek, of “American Political History: Essays on the State of the Discipline.”

Contact: Father Miscamble at 574-631-7541 or Miscamble.1@nd.edu

Originally published by Michael O. Garvey at newsinfo.nd.edu on April 02, 2008.