Munro, Dana Carleton

Munro, Dana Carleton (1866-1933), first Dodge Professor of History, graduated from Brown University in 1887 and, soon after, studied in Germany, where he acquired what became a life-long interest in the Crusades. He died before completing his magnum opus -- a history of the Crusades based an exhaustive and critical use of contemporary sources, and on field work in the Near East; but he published five other books that testify to his learning and industry. One of these, The Middle Ages, first published in 1902, went through several revised editions and was known to generations of college students.

Munro's students admired him for his profound knowledge and for the generous way he shared his learning. Many leading medieval historians were trained in his graduate seminars; a group of them wrote The Crusades and Other Essays, published in his honor in 1928.

As chairman of the history department from 1916 to 1928, he built up the faculty, raised teaching standards, and stimulated research by his own example and counsel.

Munro's geniality and capacity for making friends, coupled with his wide intellectual interests, made him a leader in many scholarly organizations. He was president of the American Historical Association, managing editor of the American Historical Review, and active in the affairs of the American Philosophical Society. He was chosen as chairman of the advisory board of the American Council of Learned Societies when that organization was formed in 1928, and was elected president of the Medieval Academy in 1930. He served in both capacities until his death in 1933.

From Alexander Leitch, A Princeton Companion, copyright Princeton University Press (1978).

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