November 19


November 19, 1958 Annette Gordon-Reed, the first African American to win the Pulitzer Prize for History, was born in segregated east Texas. Gordon-Reed earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from Dartmouth College in 1981 and her Doctor of Jurisprudence degree from Harvard Law School in 1984. She spent her early career as counsel to the New York City Board of Corrections. From 1992 to 2010, she was a professor at New York Law School. Gordon-Reed published her first book, “Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings: An American Controversy,” in 1997. That book established that Jefferson and Hemings had some type of intimate relationship. Her book “The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family” (2008) won the 2008 National Book Award for Nonfiction and the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for History. On February 25, 2010, President Barack Obama awarded Gordon-Reed the National Humanities Medal, the nation’s highest honor in the arts and humanities. Also that year, she was awarded a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship. Gordon-Reed is currently professor of law and history at Harvard and the Carol K. Pforzheimer Professor at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. Her most recent publication is “Andrew Johnson: The American Presidents Series-The 17th President, 1865-1869” (2011).


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