Harold C. Livesay
Specialty: American Business, Labor, and Recent U.S.
Harold C. Livesay was born June 13, 1934, in Louisville, Kentucky. Before turning his attention to academic pursuits, he toiled at several occupations, with fluctuating success. Among these were tomato picker, ferry boat deckhand, telephone repairman, railroad yardmaster, self-employed painter of bull-dozers, parachutist in the 82nd Airborne Division of the United States Army, steel trucker, and numerous others. Following this period of peregrinating odd-jobbery (during which he acquired a love for travel, an expensive skiing habit, a curiosity about American history, and five children), Mr. Livesay yearned for a less laborious, more mentally stimulating way of life and, therefore, sought solace in the printed page. His singleminded dedication to his new career resulted in a B.A. from the University of Delaware in 1966, an M.A. from The Johns Hopkins University in 1968, and an uninterrupted flow of publications on topics in and out of economic history.
After receiving his Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins in June, 1970, Mr. Livesay accepted a position in the History Department of the University of Michigan, where he was employed until 1978, to the benefit of the citizens of the state and to the intense relief of his creditors. In 1978 he removed his seat of operations to the State University of New York at Binghamton. In 1981, emulating many of the industries he studies, Mr. Livesay moved south, becoming Head of the History Department of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University at Blacksburg, Va. Thence, he departed in 1987 for Texas A&M University where he lived happily ever after. He held the Clifford A. Taylor Professorship in Liberal Arts from September 1988 through August 2014.