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Thursday, October 18, 2012 BGSU
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David Skaggs
David Skaggs

Skaggs honored for life of military scholarship, duty

Dr. David Curtis Skaggs, a professor emeritus of history, and noted United States military historian, will receive the Samuel Eliot Morison Award on Saturday (Oct. 20), presented by the USS Constitution Museum in Boston at the Bicentennial Chairman's Dinner and Awards Ceremony.

"The award is the highest recognition by the Board of Trustees of a person or persons whose public service has enhanced the image of the USS Constitution and reflects the best of Admiral Morison: artful scholarship, patriotic pride, eclectic interest in the sea and all things maritime and a desire to preserve our past for future generations," the award says.

Just like Morison, Skaggs taught at a university, was involved with the military and wrote books and scholarly articles about the navy and the waters it used.

According to the letter informing Skaggs of the award, "Your research and award- winning scholarship about the United States Navy's role in the War of 1812 on the Great Lakes demonstrate that you reflect the best of Admiral Morison."

Skaggs has written three books, including "Oliver Hazard Perry: Honor, Courage and Patriotism in the Early U.S. Navy," and was a principal co-author of "A Signal Victory: The Lake Erie Campaign, 1812-1813," which won the North American Society for Oceanic History's prize for naval history. Widely published, he is also the editor or co-editor of several other books such as "The Sixty Years' War for the Great Lakes."

Skaggs began teaching at BGSU in 1965, rising to full professorship in 1977; he retired in 2001. Besides teaching introductory courses in U.S. history, he taught undergraduate and graduate courses in military, colonial, revolutionary and early national American history. He has advised several doctoral dissertations and master's theses and served as departmental graduate adviser.

While at BGSU, Skaggs served in the Army Reserve, retiring as a colonel in 1991. He is a graduate of the Field Artillery School, Army Command and General Staff College and the Army War College.

Skaggs received his bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Kansas in 1959 and 1960, respectively. After serving two years as a field artillery officer with the First Infantry Division, he resumed his graduate studies at Georgetown University, from which he obtained his doctorate in history in 1966.

Events in brief

Retired Israeli ambassador Yoram Ettinger will discuss "Why Strong U.S.-Israeli Relations Are Important" this evening, and Anton Chekhov's "The Seagull" opens in the Eva Marie Saint Theatre. Read more In Brief.

in the news

High schoolers play the game of 'Life' at BGSU
- The Blade

New Music fest kicks off
- The Blade

Eva Marie Saint pleased with new theater
- Sentinel-Tribune

Letter to the community

We were disturbed to hear of two recent acts of vandalism that included racist remarks in the Bowling Green community. We, as part of the campus and broader community, want to make it clear that this behavior cannot and will not be tolerated.

Bowling Green State University and the City of Bowling Green are committed to being a diverse and inclusive environment. In fact, one of the core values of the University is "respect for one another," and the city has been a leader in inclusion since 1963 with the establishment of the Human Relations Commission and adoption of an unlawful discrimination ordinance in 2009.

In addition to the city commission, the University has an Office of Equity and Diversity (OED). Anyone who feels they are being targeted or discriminated against should contact the City of Bowling Green at 419-354-6204, or if you are a member of the campus community, OED at or

While we don't believe these isolated incidences represent the values of our community, we should take this opportunity to remember that collectively we are responsible for making BGSU and the city of Bowling Green an inclusive community where all of our residents feel welcome and safe.

Dick Edwards, Mayor of the City of Bowling Green
John Fawcett, Municipal Administrator, City of Bowling Green
Mary Ellen Mazey, President of Bowling Green State University
William Primrose, Chair of the Board of Trustees for Bowling Green State University

The Bowling Green Police Department offered the following update to their investigation.

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October 18, 2012