Michael Kraus (1901-90)
AHA Staff, November 1990
Michael Kraus, professor emeritus of history at the City College of New York, died August 9 in Sun City, AZ at the age of 89.
Professor Kraus was graduated from City College in 1923 and earned his graduate degrees at Columbia University. He joined the history department at City College in 1926 and retired after 40 years at the college.
A recipient of a Social Science Fellowship and a Guggenheim Fellow, he was an effective teacher and a productive scholar. His doctoral dissertation, Intercolonial Aspects of American Culture on the Eve of the Revolution, paved the way for his pioneer work, The Atlantic Civilization: 18th-Century Origins, which focused attention on the indebtedness of European culture to American influence.
Dr. Kraus contributed to the study of American historiography in A History of American History, reissued some sixteen years later by the University of Oklahoma Press under the title The Writing of American History. He was also the author of Immigration: The American Mosaic, and of The United States to 1865 (in the University of Michigan History of the Modern World, edited by Nevins and Ehrmann). In addition to his books he was a contributor to periodicals through his articles and book reviews.
Dr. Kraus was one of the most distinguished members of the History Department at City College. A member of the American Historical Association for more than 50 years, he initiated the Michael Kraus Research Grant to assist younger scholars. He was known by his students as a warm, concerned, and dedicated scholar.