Department of History

Ruth Crocker

Dr. Ruth Crocker proudly represented the History Department and Auburn University as a Professor of History. She received a BA and an MA from St. Anne's College in Oxford and an MA and PhD in United States History from Purdue University under Harold D. Woodman.

Crocker was awarded an alumni professorship in 2001, received the Humanities Achievement Award in Auburn's College of Liberal Arts that same year, and in 2005 was recognized with the History Department's Phi Alpha Theta Robert Reid Outstanding Graduate Professor Award.

Dr. Crocker's areas of specialization include gender, class and ethnicity in Progressive-era history and historiography and a critical history of social work and social welfare. She has written essays and reviews on voluntarism, charity and philanthropy, and the cultural history of the gift, as well as on historiography and theory.

She is the author of Social Work and Social Order: The Settlement Movement in Two Industrial Cities (University of Illinois Press, 1992), and Mrs. Russell Sage: Women's Activism and Philanthropy in Gilded Age and Progressive Era America (Indiana University Press, 2006).

Her recent publications include "Philanthropy," an entry in Poverty in the United States: An Encyclopedia of History, Politics, and Policy, edited by Gwendolyn Mink and Alice O'Connor (ABC-CLIO, 2004); a chapter in Charity, Philanthropy, and Civility in American History, edited by Larry Friedman and Mark McGarvie (2002); a chapter in Ellen Lagemann, ed., Philanthropic Foundations: New Scholarship, New Possibilities (Indiana University Press, 1999); and an essay, "Unsettling Perspectives: The Settlement Movement, the Rhetoric of Social History, and the Search for Synthesis," in Jeff Cox and Shelton Stromquist, eds., Contesting the Master Narrative: Essays in Social History (1997).

Dr. Crocker participated in a roundtable session, "The Body and Biography," at the Berkshire Conference of Women's Historians at U Mass Amherst in June 2011. The session was chaired by Linda Gordon. Following the session, participants planned an anthology, "Disability and Disclosure."

Dr. Crocker's teaching responsibilities in the History department included courses in Gilded Age and Progressive-era United States; Historical Methods; and women's history, both at the graduate and undergraduate level, as well as Honors World History. In 2002 she introduced and taught a new undergraduate class, "Gender in American History." In addition, she was actively involved in Auburn University Women's Studies Program and has brought a number of speakers to Auburn's campus.

Last Updated: December 01, 2015