Texas A&M Professor David Vaught Honored By American Historians
Texas A&M University history professor David Vaught has been designated as Distinguished Lecturer by The Organization of American Historians (OAH) for his work on American rural history, labor history and the history of American baseball.
Vaught is one of 21 new speakers appointed to OAH’s esteemed Distinguished Lectureship Program. He and the other scholars join nearly 600 Distinguished Lecturers who share their expertise with audiences across the country, provide historical context on important topics and headline commemorations and other events.
“I am honored to be appointed an OAH Distinguished Lecturer—a milestone achievement for a U.S. historian,” Vaught said. “The appointment provides further evidence of my stature in the discipline and the widespread external recognition of my research and teaching. More importantly, the appointment recognizes my efforts to appeal not only to an interdisciplinary audience of scholars but to the public as well. History, in my mind, demands nothing less—and baseball provides the perfect vehicle.”
Vaught is a longtime professor of history at Texas A&M and is the author of four books:
- The Farmers’ Game: Baseball in Rural America (2013), winner of the 2014 Society for American Baseball Research SABR Baseball Research Award
- Teaching the Big Class: Advice from a History Colleague (2011)
- After the Gold Rush: Tarnished Dreams in the Sacramento Valley (2007)
- Cultivating California: Growers, Specialty Crops, and Labor, 1875-1920 (1999)
His research has been funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, and he is a past president of the Agricultural History Society, former head of the history department, University Distinguished Lecturer and recipient of the Melbern G. Glasscock Professorship in Undergraduate Teaching Excellence.
He currently is writing a book with the working title, “Spitter: Farmer-Pitcher Gaylord Perry,” a biography of the notorious Hall of Famer pitcher who had baseball stardom but suffered failure on the farm during the 1980s agricultural crisis.
“David Vaught brings the perspective of a scholar and the love of a fan to his talks on the role of baseball in American history,” said Katherine M. Finley, OAH executive director. “We are honored he is part of our team of Distinguished Lecturers.”
OAH Distinguished Lecturers agree to donate their speaking fees to the OAH, and their work in the field is an essential component of the organization’s mission to promote excellence in the scholarship, teaching and presentation of American history.
“OAH’s Distinguished Lecturers provide a vital service to communities, libraries, museums, and universities by increasing public awareness and understanding of the importance of American history. This is especially valuable today as our nation faces unique challenges,” Finley said. “We thank Professor Vaught for his service to the organization.”