McLaughlin, Andrew C. (Andrew Cunningham), 1861-1947Alternative names
Professor of history at the University of Michigan and the University of Chicago.
From the description of Andrew C. McLaughlin papers, 1881-1947. (University of Michigan). WorldCat record id: 34422024
American constitutional historian. McLaughlin served as chairman of the Department of History at the University of Chicago from 1906 until 1927, as professor until 1929, and as emeritus from 1929 until 1936.
From the description of Papers, 1881-1944 (inclusive). (University of Chicago Library). WorldCat record id: 52248298
Andrew C. McLaughlin (1861-1947), the son of Scottish immigrants, was born in Beardstown, Illinois and grew up in Muskegon, Michigan. He received a bachelor's degree (1882) and law degree (1885) from the University of Michigan, practiced law in Chicago for several months, and returned to Ann Arbor as an instructor in Latin. When a mentor, Thomas Cooley, became chairman of the Interstate Commerce Commission in 1887, McLaughlin moved to the history department and assumed Cooley's courses in constitutional history. In 1890, he married Lois Angell, daughter of University President James B. Angell. In 1891, he was appointed professor of history.
During these years, McLaughlin published several books on the history of Michigan and became increasingly involved in national historical affairs as head of an American Historical Association committee on secondary teaching and as managing editor of the American Historical Review. By 1903, when McLaughlin was appointed director of the Carnegie Institution's Bureau of Historical Research in Washington, he was a widely respected historian. In early 1906, following the death of Hermann von Holst and the resignation of J. Franklin Jameson at Chicago, President William Rainey Harper and Henry Pratt Judson persuaded McLaughlin to join the faculty of the new Midwestern university. McLaughlin served as chairman of the Department of History from 1906 until 1927, as professor until 1929, and as emeritus from 1929-1936.
While administrative duties took much of McLaughlin's time at Chicago, his Papers reflect three intellectual interests, which dominated the mature years of his career. He was concerned first with the quality of teaching in history. McLaughlin devoted himself to the careful training of students and collaborated with Claude H. Van Tyne of the University of Michigan in writing a textbook on American history. The correspondence between these two scholars is a commentary on the difficulties of conveying historical knowledge without sacrificing its integrity to popular expectations.
McLaughlin was equally concerned with the role of the historian in American society. As council-member and president of the American Historical Association, he argued for an active professional interest in contemporary political issues. When America entered the war against Germany in 1917, McLaughlin led a group of noted historians to form the National Board for Historical Service. "In my judgment," he wrote to Jameson, "the value of the historian now is chiefly in pointing out the route into the future which his various experiences have enabled him to see. In other words, it is time for us to dare to use our historical information for purposes of prophecy and actual guidance". Sponsored by the Bureau, McLaughlin went to Britain in the spring of 1918 to deliver a series of lectures explaining American war aims and endorsing the alliance of the Atlantic democracies. The British tour was one of the proudest moments of McLaughlin's life, and neither the death of his son Rowland on the battlefield nor the later American rejection of the League of Nations could dim his Wilsonian confidence in the elemental justice of the war.
The third concern of McLaughlin's Chicago years was the writing of constitutional history. Beginning with his first major work on the subject, The Confederation and the Constitution, 1783-1789 (1905), he produced a steady stream of articles, lectures, and books on the development of American constitutional democracy: The Courts, the Constitution and Parties (1912); Steps in the Development of American Democracy (1920); The Foundations of American Constitutionalism (1932); and the culminating work of his life of scholarship, A Constitutional History of the United States (1935), winner of the Pulitzer Prize for history. McLaughlin's distinctive contribution to the historiography of the Constitution was his conviction that American political institutions were less the fruit of revolutionary fervor than the product of organic development rooted in the British colonial experience. This emphasis on evolution and continuity marked a sharp departure from the interpretations of earlier scholars and laid the basis for a fundamental revision of their work.
From the guide to the McLaughlin, Andrew Cunningham. Papers, 1881-1944, (Special Collections Research Center University of Chicago Library 1100 East 57th Street Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.)
Andrew Cunningham McLaughlin was born on Feb. 14, 1861, at Beardstown, IL, the son of David and Isabella Campbell McLaughlin. He received the Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Michigan in 1882, and the Bachelor of Laws degree in 1885.
Following his graduation, McLaughlin taught Latin at the University of Michigan, then transferred to the history department, where he taught American History until he left in 1906 to go to the University of Chicago. He taught at Chicago until 1929.
McLaughlin was a recognized scholar of American constitutional history. He also authored textbooks on American history, a monograph on history of higher education in Michigan, a biography of Lewis Cass, and numerous journal articles.
In 1918 he lectured in England and Ireland on the causes that had led the United States into the war. His book America and Britain (1919) was a compilation of these lectures.
McLaughlin was professionally active, serving as director of the Bureau of Historical Research of the Carnegie Institution in Washington and managing editor of The American Historical Review (1901-1905). He married Lois Thompson Angell in 1890. He died September 24, 1947.
From the guide to the Andrew Cunningham McLaughlin papers, 1881-1947, (Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan)
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