Our departmental lecture series, begun during the 1971-72 academic year, is named in honor of John C. Pflaum (1904-1975) who was a member of the History faculty from 1946 to 1972. Thanks to the generosity of his former students and colleagues, each spring a distinguished scholar is invited to campus to speak on a significant issue in history.

About John C. Pflaum
John C. Pflaum (1904-1975) was a professor of history with special interests in the Civil War, the European origins of the First World War, and early Carlisle.  He held the Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching in recognition of his popularity with students during his Dickinson tenure which began in 1946.  He received his master’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania where he also taught for three years after spending six years on the faculty of Temple University.  During his lifetime, he was a most voracious reader–especially a devourer of history, memoirs, biography, and prose literature.  Above all, John Pflaum was a born teacher who inspired fanatical devotion in several generations of Dickinsonians.  His teaching placed an emphasis upon precision and fact and evidenced love of conventional art and literature.  His enthusiasm and dedication are best described in his own words, “The sheer pleasure of teaching, the fun I’ve had in the average class--this is what I remember more than anything else.  My heart is in the lecture room.  It’s almost a shame to take the money.”

2017 Pflaum Lecture Video

On Thursday, March 30, 2017, historian Jeffrey Pilcher of the University of Toronto delivered the annual Pflaum lecture, entitled  "Dos Equis or Five Rabbit?  Beer and Taste in Greater Mexico."  Watch the video here:

2016 Pflaum Lecture Video

On Monday, April 4, 2016, historian Peter Gatrell of the University of Manchester delivered the annual Pflaum lecture, entitled  "Writing the History of Refugees in the 20th Century:  What's New, What's Next?"  Watch the video here:

2015 Pflaum Lecture Video

On Wednesday, March 25, 2015, historian Michael Adas of Rutgers University delivered the annual Pflaum Lecture, entitled "War of the Empires:  The Great War and the Demise of the European World Order." Watch the video here: