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  • David Morris Potter was an American historian of the South. He was born in Augusta, Georgia, and graduated from Emory University in 1932. At Yale he worked with Ulrich Bonnell Phillips. He earned his Ph.D. in 1940 and published Lincoln and His Party in the Secession Crisis in 1942. As professor of history at Yale and Stanford he directed numerous dissertations, and served on numerous editorial and professional boards. He was a pioneer in sponsoring the history of women. Potter won, posthumously, the 1977 Pulitzer Prize for History for The Impending Crisis, 1848-1861, which was an in-depth narrative and analysis of the causes of the American Civil War. His main achievement was to put the history of the South in national perspective. He rejected the conflict model of Charles A. Beard and emphasized the depth of consensus on American values. He considered himself a conservative and was a prominent exponent of Consensus history.

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