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Fred Albert Shannon
Born February 12, 1893(1893-02-12)
Sedalia, Missouri
Died 4 June 1963 (aged 70)
Resting place Mount Hope Cemetery, Urbana, Illinois

Fred Albert Shannon (February 12, 1893 – February 4, 1963) was an American historian and a Pulitzer Prize winner. He had many publications related to the American history, and he won the Pulitzer Prize for History for The Organization and Administration of the Union Army, 1861-1865.


Shannon was born February 12, 1893 in Sedalia, Missouri, the son of Louis Tecumseh Shannon and Sarah Margaret (Sparks) Shannon. By 1900 his family was living in Harrison Township, Clay County, Indiana . He completed a B.A degree at the Indiana State Teachers College and an M.A. degree at Indiana University in 1918. He worked as a school teacher, and then became professor of history at Iowa Wesleyan College in 1919. Five years later, he completed a Ph.D. degree at the University of Iowa and became assistant professor of history at the Iowa State Teachers College. In 1926 he moved to the Kansas State College of Agriculture and Applied Science. He was associate professor of history at Kansas State. He also taught at Cornell College (1924) and Ohio State University (1929) in the summer session.[1]

From 1939 to 1961, he was professor of history at the University of Illinois and served many years as chairman of its history department.[2][3]

Shannao was married to Edna M. (Jones) Shannon, born November 10, 1891 and died January 2, 1951. They had 6 children, including Frederick A. Shannon, M.D., herpetologist.

He was a member of the American Historical Association. He was om the executive committee of the Mississippi Valley Historical Association. [1]

He died on February 4, 1963. He had just begun a semester as a visiting professor at the University of South Carolina. [4] He was buried with his wife in Mount Hope Cemetery, Urbana, Illinois.[5]

Assessment of his work[]

Shannon edited various publications, and contributed to professional journals.[1] He wrote history from the perspective of an average American. He believed that it was the value of average Americans that shaped the United States, and he had low regard for wealthy Americans.[6] In 1928 Shannon wrote a two-volume book The Organization and Administration of the Union Army, 1861-1865, which covered the history of the Union Army.[6][1] He won the Pulitzer Prize for History for the book in 1929.[1]

Selected publications[]

  • The Organization and Administration of the Union Army, 1861-1865 (1928)
  • The Farmer’s Last Frontier: Agriculture, 1860-1897 (1945)
  • American Farmers’ Movements (1957)
  • The Centennial Years: A Political and Economic History of America from Late 1870s to the Early 1890s (1967)


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Fischer (1994), p. 53
  2. Fred A. Shannon Papers | University of Illinois Archives
  3. National Archives Draft Registration card Serial No U 2017, dated April 27, 1942, for Fred Albert Shannon< Urbana Local Board No 1, Champaign, Illinois
  4. Brennan (1999), p. 283
  5. Fred Shannon at Find A Gtrave
  6. 6.0 6.1 Brennan (1999), p. 284


  • Fischer, Heinz Dietrich; Erika J. Fischer (1994). American History Awards, 1917-1991: From Colonial Settlements to the Civil Rights Movement. Walter de Gruyter. ISBN 3598301774. 
  • Brennan, Elizabeth A.; Elizabeth C. Clarage (1999). Who's who of Pulitzer Prize Winners. Greenwood Publishing Group. ISBN 1573561118. 

External links[]