Bolton, Herbert Eugene

Bolton, Herbert Eugene, 1870–1953, American historian and teacher, b. Wilton, Monroe co., Wis. He taught history at the Univ. of Texas (1901–9), Stanford (1909–11), and the Univ. of California (1911–44) and became an outstanding authority on Spanish colonial days in the West. He edited and translated numerous important journals of Spanish soldiers and priests, widening the printed sources immeasurably, but he is perhaps better known for such works as Texas in the Middle Eighteenth Century (1921, repr. 1970), The Spanish Borderlands (1921), Outpost of Empire (1931, repr. 1966; the story of the founding of San Francisco), and the biographies Rim of Christendom (1936, repr. 1960; on Father Eusebio Francisco Kino) and Coronado (1949). For these sound studies of a colorful period Bolton employed a prose that reflected his own vigorous and colorful personality. He also promoted the study of the history of the Americas as a unit of human development. He was also director from 1916 to 1940 of the Bancroft Library at the Univ. of California.

See studies by L. Hanke, ed. (1964), and W. R. Jacobs et al. (1965).

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