Bertram Wyatt-Brown, an American history professor who wrote widely on Southern history and culture and whose book on honor in the antebellum South was a 1983
Wyatt-Brown studied at
After earning his doctorate from Johns Hopkins in 1963, Wyatt-Brown began a teaching career, with positions at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland from 1966 to 1983 and the
His study of the role of honor in all classes of society in the antebellum South resulted in his critically acclaimed book "Southern Honor: Ethics and Behavior in the Old South," published in 1982 by
Historian David Herbert Donald, reviewing the book in the
"He has looked for patterns in such intimate relationships as marriage and child rearing and in public behavior from extending hospitality to strangers to participating in lynch mobs," he wrote.
Book critic Jonathan Yardley wrote in the
Peter Carmichael, a professor of Civil War history at Gettysburg College and director of the Civil War Institute in Gettysburg, Pa., said this month, "Every historian hopes that his books will stand the test of time; few do. But Bert's will, and he made contributions that are still part of the discussion and will continue to be so.... He understood the Old South in all of its beauty and ugliness."
Bertram Wyatt-Brown was born March 19, 1932, in
Wyatt-Brown earned a bachelor's degree in English in 1953 from the University of the South, in Sewanee, Tenn. He served in the Navy from 1953 to 1955, where he attained the rank of lieutenant. He then earned a second bachelor's degree in history in 1957 from King's College in Cambridge, England, before enrolling at Johns Hopkins.
His fascination with the origins of Southern character in the days before the Civil War resulted in his books dealing with the subject, such as "Yankee Saints and Southern Sinners," "Honor and Violence in the Old South" and "The American People in the Antebellum South."
Wyatt-Brown is survived by his wife of 50 years, Anne, along with a daughter, Natalie Ingraham Wyatt-Brown of St. Paul, Minn.; and two grandchildren. Another daughter, Laura Matthews Wyatt-Brown, died in 1971.