Rise of the New West, 1819-1829
Frederick Jackson Turner (1861-1932) was one of the two most influential American historians of the early 20th century. He is best known for The ... Show synopsis Frederick Jackson Turner (1861-1932) was one of the two most influential American historians of the early 20th century. He is best known for The Significance of the Frontier in American History. As a professor of history at Wisconsin, Turner trained scores of disciples who in turn dominated American history programs throughout the country. His emphasis on the importance of the frontier in shaping American character influenced the interpretation found in thousands of scholarly histories. His model of sectionalism as a composite of social forces, such as ethnicity and land ownership, gave historians the tools to use social history as the foundation of all social, economic and political developments in American history. His essays are collected in The Significance of Sections in American History (1932), which won the Pulitzer Prize in History in 1933. Turner's sectionalism thesis had almost as much influence among historians as his frontier thesis. He argued that different ethno-cultural groups had distinct settlement patterns, and this revealed itself in politics, economics and society. His other works include: The Character and Influence of the Indian Trade in Wisconsin (1891).