Everyone interested in American history, especially the Civil War years, owes an enormous debt to Douglas Southall Freeman (1886-1953). his acclaimed biographies, including Lee’s lieutenants and the Pulitzer Prize-winning R.E. Lee, are still widely read and enjoyed. Freeman was awarded another Pulitzer for George Washington, and those six volumes remain the definitive work on the first president.
Freeman’s influence was not confined to Virginia or the South, nor was his expertise limited to studying the past. During World War I, Pres. Woodrow Wilson read Freeman’s daily reports about the conflict in Europe. Freeman also acted as friend and adviser to world leaders like Winston Churchill and Dwight Eisenhower. Time Magazine honored him with a cover story and the reporters from Life tried in vain to keep up with his schedule.