Cooley, Charles Horton, 1864-1929

Alternative names
Birth 1864-08-17
Death 1929-05-08

Biographical notes:

Professor of sociology at University of Michigan.

From the description of Charles Horton Cooley papers, 1872-1930. (University of Michigan). WorldCat record id: 34418308

Private in Co. E, 2nd New Jersey Cavalry.

From the description of Diary, 1865 Jan. 1-June 18. (Duke University Library). WorldCat record id: 30839126

Charles Horton Cooley was born August 17, 1864 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He was the son of Michigan Supreme Court Justice Thomas M. Cooley and Mary Horton Cooley. He attended the public schools of Ann Arbor graduating from high school in 1880. He enrolled at the University of Michigan that fall at the age of sixteen but only graduated in 1887 having spent some time in Europe prior to completing his degree requirements. Also during this period, Cooley had worked with the Industrial Works at Bay City as a draftsman, then going to Washington D.C. where he was employed with the Interstate Commerce Commission and the census bureau.

Prior to receiving his doctor of philosophy in 1894, Cooley had become in 1892 an assistant in political economy at the University of Michigan. In 1895, Cooley was instrumental in the establishment of a course of study in sociology. In 1899, he was appointed assistant professor of sociology, then junior professor (1904) and full professor (1907). Cooley was the author of several works, including Human Nature and the Social Order (1902); Social Organization (1909); Social Process (1918); and Life and the Student (1927).

Cooley was widely respected as one of the seminal thinkers in the field of sociology for his thoughts and writings on social theory. In his writings, Cooley elaborated concepts of the individual and society. The central principal in Cooley's sociological view was that the essential facts of social life are mental, and the conduct of persons and groups and the forms of institutions, are the result of fundamental mental phenomena.

Cooley died May 7, 1929.

From the guide to the Charles Horton Cooley papers, 1872-1930, (Bentley Historical Library University of Michigan)


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