James McPherson, a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and professor emeritus at Princeton University, will present the inaugural John E. McGinty Lecture in History. McPherson's lecture is titled "Unconditional Surrender: The Failure of Peace Negotiations in the American Civil War."
McPherson is the George Henry Davis '86 Professor of American History Emeritus at Princeton University, where he has taught since 1962. He holds a B.A. from Gustavus Adolphus College and a Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University. McPherson is the author of numerous books, including "Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era," which won the Pulitzer Prize in American history in 1989; "For Cause and Comrades: Why Men Fought in the Civil War," which won the Lincoln Prize in 1998; and "Tried by War: Abraham Lincoln as Commander in Chief," which won the Lincoln Prize in 2009.
In 2007, McPherson was the first recipient of the Pritzker Military Library Literature Award for lifetime achievement in the field of military history. He has served as president of the American Historical Association and the Society of American Historians, and has been a leading voice on behalf of the preservation of Civil War battlefields.