I know of no higher calling than teaching, and Dr. Wesley Bagby certainly left his students better than he found them. No one can expect more of their professor.
The above, by Stephen A. Davis, was just one of the numerous tributes coming from West Virginia University students, alumni, faculty and friends following the death of long-time history professor Wesley M. Bagby III in 2002.
Dr. Bagby was widely recognized as an authority on American diplomatic history and the author of seven books, several of which became standard textbooks at college and universities across the nation.
Scholars hailThe Road to Normalcy: The Presidential Campaign and Election of 1920as his finest work, and still consider it a leading source in the field.
And his legacy of achievement and scholarship is living on at WVU because of a scholarship which bears his name.
The Dr. Wesley M. Bagby III History Scholarship Fund provides assistance to a doctoral student in the Department of History at the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences. Recipients must be dedicated to pursuing the field of history as a career.
Melinda Hicks, a doctoral student from Diamond, Ohio, received the inaugural scholarship last year. Louis Martin, a Ph.D. candidate from New Cumberland, is the 2005 recipient.
The Department is proud to honor the memory of the late Professor Wesley M. Bagby through this award,said Dr. Robert Blobaum, chair of WVU ’s Department of History.We expect that the doctoral students selected to receive it will carry on the tradition of excellent research in U.S. history established at WVU by Dr. Bagby.
I was very honored to be the first recipient of the Bagby Scholarship in 2004,Hicks said.The scholarship provided me with the opportunity to complete more extensive research than I had anticipated. With this award also came a challenge to measure up to the high standards set by Dr. Bagby during his long and successful career.
Hicks, a doctoral candidate in American history, is writing a dissertation on colonial-era women as entrepreneurs. She also directed the 2005 Rush Holt History Conference, an important national colloquium held at WVU each year.
I am honored to be chosen for the Bagby Scholarship and to be recognized for my efforts,said Martin, this years recipient.The financial award will help considerably, given the significant costs of graduate school.
Martin is currently researching post-World War II working class culture in the Upper Ohio Valley.
Bagby was elected one of WVU ’s three”most effective”professors by the alumni classes of 1965, 1966 and 1968. He was selected as one of 12 outstanding faculty members in 1967. He was named a Benedum Distinguished Scholar in 1992, and received Fulbright awards in 1975 and 1982.
The scholarship is a wonderful tribute to Wes Bagby,Eberly Interim Dean Rudolph P. Almasy said.It recognizes what he was all about: teaching, service and the mentoring of students.