Author: Herbert B. Adams

Herbert Baxter Adams, Library of Congress, 1870-1880

Herbert Baxter Adams (1850–1901) was an American educator and historian. A descendant of a Massachusetts Bay colonist, Adams was born in Shutesbury, Massachusetts. He studied at Amherst College, and received his doctorate at Heidelberg, Germany, in 1876. He was a fellow in history at Johns Hopkins University from 1876 to 1878, associate from 1878 to 1883, and was appointed associate professor in 1883. At Johns Hopkins, in 1880, he began his famous seminar, “Johns Hopkins University Studies in Historical and Political Science,” where many of the next generation of American historians trained. Adams helped found in 1884 the American Historical Association, for which he was secretary until 1900, when he resigned and was made first vice president.

Columbus and His Discovery of America

Herbert B. Adams

In this address, given on October 10, 1892 at the Peabody Institute at Johns Hopkins University to celebrate the opening of the academic year, Herbert Baxter Adams (1850–1901), a professor of history, uses Columbus’s discovery of the New World as an example of a “great deed,” that brings with it “a certain immortality.”