Gregory M. PfitzerThough born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Pfitzer grew up in various Mid-Western towns, primarily Cincinnati, Ohio. He attended Colby College in Waterville, Maine where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in American Studies and History. He did graduate work at Harvard University, where he was a teaching associate in the Literature and the Arts program as well as a tutor in the departments of History and the History of Science. He earned a M.A. degree in History and a Ph.D. in the History of American Civilization from Harvard. After brief teaching stints at Colby and Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois, he arrived on the Skidmore campus in 1989.
Pfitzer is the former Chair of the American Studies department and teaches a wide variety of courses, including AM 103: Introduction to American Culture, AM 201: American Identities: Pre-1870s, AM 250A: Hudson River Culture, AM 360C: The 1960s, and AM 374: Senior Seminar. In 2004, Pfitzer was honored with Skidmore's Ralph A. Ciancio Award for Excellence in Teaching.
Pfitzer's primary intellectual interest is history of historical writing. He has published three books Samuel Eliot Morison's Historical World (Northeastern University Press, 1991); Picturing the Past: Illustrated Histories and the Role of Visual Literacy in the American Imagination, 1840-1900 (Smithsonian Institution Press, 2002); and Popular History and the Literary Marketplace, 1840-1920 (University of Massachusetts Press, 2008).
Pfitzer has written a number of journal articles on Thoreau, Melville, Hawthorne, Henry James, Charles Francis Adams, Jr., Mark Twain and the painter Winslow Homer. He is also the author of a piece on science fiction literature entitled "The Only Good Alien is a Dead Alien: The Metaphysics of Indian-Hating on the High Frontier." More recently, he collaborated on an online exhibit about the production histories of two mid-19th-century pictorial history projects.
When Pfitzer is not in the classroom or the archives, he can be found at the gym, where he swims, plays basketball (and specializes in hitting game-winning three-pointers), and works out. When he injures himself, as he frequently does, he is cared for by his wife, Mia, an x-ray technician for a number of local doctors, and his two children, Michael (a recent Tufts University graduate) and Sally (a Boston University undergraduate).
Email Professor Pfitzer
CREATIVE THOUGHT MATTERS
Skidmore College · 815 North Broadway · Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
© 2006 Skidmore College