In Memoriam

A. William Salomone

Joel Blatt and Sandi E. Cooper | May 1, 1989

A. William Salomone, 73, professor emeritus of history, University of Rochester, died January 24, 1989 in Philadelphia. Born in Guardiagrele (Abruzzi), Italy, he came to the United States 60 years ago, graduated from La Salle College and received his master's and doctoral degrees from the University of Pennsylvania.

A specialist in modern Italian history, Professor Salomone taught at New York University for 15 years, before going to Rochester as a Wilson Professor of European History, where he taught for 20 years. He retired in 1982. During his New York years, he often taught at Columbia University and served on dissertation committees in Italian history.

He was the author of several books, including Italian Democracy in the Making. Originally a dissertation, it won the AHA Herbert Baxter Adams prize in 1946. A classic in its field, it established his reputation as a promising scholar. It was later revised and published as Italy in the Giolittian Era, 1960.

In the last years of his life, while struggling against partial blindness, illness and cancer, he transformed his strongly-held interest in historiographic issues into invaluable summations of the work of major historians for the International Dictionary of World Historians.

In one of his last articles "Momenti di storia, frammenti di ricordi con Salvemini tra Stati Uniti e Italia," Revista Archivio Trimestrale, July-December, 1982, Salomone reminisced about his own intellectual maturation, shaped in part, by his personal interchanges with Gaetano Salvemini and a meeting with Benedetto Croce. In October, 1988, ill and in pain, he delivered a lecture in Molfetta, Salvemini's hometown, on the work and contribution of their native son. It was his last public appearance.

Decorated as a knight-officer in the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic, he was widely in demand as a guest lecturer, organizer of numerous conferences, including a highly successful centennial of the Italian Risorgimento in 1961, and an international conference devoted to Giacomo Matteotti on the 50th anniversary of the assassination of the Italian Socialist leader, both at Columbia University.

He is survived by his wife, Lina, his daughter and son-in-law, Illia Salomone and Tim Smith, two grandchildren, three brothers, two sisters and their families.

Joel Blatt
University of Connecticut, Stamford

Sandi E. Cooper
College of Staten Island, CUNY

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