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David McCullough biography

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David McCullough
Photograph by William B. McCullough

David McCullough

How to pronounce David McCullough: mc-CULL-uh

David McCullough Biography

David McCullough was acclaimed as a "master of the art of narrative history." He was the winner of two Pulitzer Prizes, two National Book Awards, and received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian award.

In the words of the citation accompanying his honorary degree from Yale, "As an historian, he paints with words, giving us pictures of the American people that live, breathe, and above all, confront the fundamental issues of courage, achievement, and moral character."

David McCullough was a two-time winner of the Francis Parkman Prize, and for his work overall he was honored by the National Book Foundation Distinguished Contribution to American Letters Award, the National Humanities Medal, and the Gold Medal for Biography given by the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, as well as the American Academy of Arts and Letters and received fifty-four honorary degrees.

In 2013, in his honor, the city of Pittsburgh, his hometown, renamed its landmark 16th Street Bridge over the Allegheny River the David McCullough Bridge. More recently, in September 2014, he was named an Officer of the Legion of Honor by decree of the President of the Republic of France.

In a crowded, productive career, he was an editor, teacher, lecturer, and familiar presence on public television—as host of Smithsonian World, The American Experience, and narrator of numerous documentaries including Ken Burns's The Civil War. His was also the narrator's voice in the movie Seabiscuit. John Adams, the seven-part mini-series on HBO produced by Tom Hanks, was one of the most acclaimed television events of recent years.

A gifted speaker, Mr. McCullough lectured in all parts of the country and abroad, as well as at the White House. He was also one of the few private citizens to speak before a joint session of Congress.

Born in Pittsburgh in 1933, he was educated there and at Yale. He was an avid reader, traveler, and enjoyed a lifelong interest in art and architecture. He was as well a devoted painter. He and his wife Rosalee Barnes McCullough had five children and, as of 2017, nineteen grandchildren. He died in early August 2022 aged 89.

David McCullough's website

This bio was last updated on 08/08/2022. In a perfect world, we would like to keep all of BookBrowse's biographies up to date, but with many thousands of lives to keep track of it's simply impossible to do. So, if the date of this bio is not recent, you may wish to do an internet search for a more current source, such as the author's website or social media presence. If you are the author or publisher and would like us to update this biography, send the complete text and we will replace the old with the new.

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Interview

David McCullough discusses his fascination with Americans in Paris and his motivations for writing The Greater Journey, which tells the untold stories of the American artists, writers, doctors, politicians, architects, and others of high aspiration who set off for Paris in the years between 1830 and 1900.

David McCullough discusses his fascination with Americans in Paris and his motivations for writing The Greater Journey, which tells the untold stories of the American artists, writers, doctors, politicians architects, and others of high aspiration who set off for Paris in the years between 1830 and 1900.

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Books by this Author

Books by David McCullough at BookBrowse
The Greater Journey jacket 1776 jacket John Adams jacket
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Readalikes

All the books below are recommended as readalikes for David McCullough but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
How we choose readalikes

  • Jane Brox

    Jane Brox

    Jane Brox is the author of Clearing Land: Legacies of the American Farm; Five Thousand Days Like This One, which was a 1999 finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award in nonfiction; Here and Nowhere Else, which won ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Greater Journey

    Try:
    Brilliant
    by Jane Brox

  • Robert A. Caro

    Robert A. Caro

    For his biographies of Robert Moses and Lyndon Johnson, Robert A. Caro has twice won the Pulitzer Prize for Biography, has three times won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Best Nonfiction Book of the Year and Best ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    John Adams

    Try:
    Master of the Senate
    by Robert A. Caro

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