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See on Tuchman

Carolyn See’s column misstates Barbara Tuchman’s aim and achievements (Editorial Page, Feb. 11). She also exaggerates the importance of the “academic historians” who snapped at her heels.

See writes as if the carping of academics was destructive to recognition. Nothing could be further from the truth. Among the 23 honorary degrees she accepted were ones from Harvard, Columbia, Yale, Brown, Notre Dame and William and Mary--all leading institutions of learning. She refused scores of others because of time constraints.

She had been president of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, president of the Society of American Historians, vice president of the Board of Trustees of the New York Public Library, trustee of the New York Society Library, trustee of her alma mater, Radcliffe. There are many others too numerous to mention. This does not fit the description of “destruction of recognition by academics.”

LESTER R. TUCHMAN

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Cos Cob, Conn.


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