On February 5, 2019, the SAWH lost one of its longtime guiding lights, Anne Firor Scott, a native of Georgia and a pioneer of American women’s history. Her first book, The Southern Lady (1970), opened up new avenues of inquiry in the field of southern history and helped originate the field of women’s history. It was followed by two more scholarly monographs, Making the Invisible Woman Visible (1984) and Natural Allies (1991), as well as numerous articles and edited collections that foregrounded women’s roles in American life.
Scott’s scholarship, which has had a lasting effect on the discipline, is the subject of Writing Women’s History: A Tribute to Anne Firor Scott (University Press of Mississippi, 2011), edited by Elizabeth Anne Payne. Another collection of essays published in her honor is Nancy A. Hewitt and Suzanne Lebsock’s Visible Women: New Essays on American Activism (University of Illinois Press, 1993).
Scott was the William K. Boyd Professor Emerita of History at Duke University, which lowered flags in tribute at the news of her passing. In 2013, she received the National Humanities Medal awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and presented to her by President Barack Obama. Scott was also a great mentor and provided keen editorial guidance and career advice to dozens of young scholars who followed in her footsteps.
In her honor, the SAWH established the biennially awarded Anne Firor Scott Mid-Career Fellowship in 2007.
Scott’s obituary in the New York Times can be found here.