Richard Sharpless oral history interviews
Scope and Contents
The collection (1991-1995) contains sound recordings and transcripts of interviews conducted by Sharpless, occasionally with the assistance of photographer Martin J. Desht, for an unpublished book project on industrial workers in the Pennsylvania Lehigh Valley. Industries discussed by the interviewees include steelworking, textile and garment manufacture, paper-goods milling, transportation, truck manufacture, machining, and construction. Two of the interviews in this collection fall outside the scope of the industrial worker oral history project.
- Creation: 1991 - 1995
- Desht, Martin J. (Martin Joseph), 1949- (Collaborator, Person)
Biographical / Historical
Richard Edward Sharpless (1937- ) served as a professor of History at Lafayette College from 1970 to 2003. Sharpless received his bachelor of arts degree in English from Elizabethtown College in 1959. He earned a master's degree in history from Rutgers University in 1968 and a doctorate from Rutgers in 1975. He was a member of the U.S. Army 13th Special Group, XVIII Airborne Corps, STRIKE Command from 1961-1963. Prior to Lafayette, he was employed as an instructor at Seton Hall University. As a specialist in Latin American history and the process of industrialization in developing and developed countries, Sharpless has written extensively on the anthracite region of Pennsylvania as well as important political leaders and developments in Latin American and Caribbean history. Sharpless’ 1985 book, The Kingdom of Coal: Work, Enterprise, and Ethnic Communities in the Mine Fields, co-authored with Donald L. Miller, John Henry MacCracken Professor of History at Lafayette College, featured research on the anthracite coal areas of northeastern Pennsylvania. Subsequent research for a book project entitled Black Fridays: Visions and Voices, was an expansion of the Black Fridays: Faces from an American Dream traveling exhibit created in 1992 with photographer Martin J. Desht. Sharpless’ oral history interviews in this collection were conducted as part of that unpublished book project on the nature of unionized and manufacturing-based jobs in the Lehigh Valley of Pennsylvania.
2 box (25 interview transcripts; 24 audio microcassettes; 5 audio cassettes)
Language of Materials
Richard Edward Sharpless (1937- ) served as a professor of history at Lafayette College from 1970 to 2003. The collection (1991-1995) contains sound recordings and transcripts of interviews conducted by Sharpless, occasionally with the assistance of photographer Martin J. Desht, for an unpublished book project on industrial workers in the Pennsylvania Lehigh Valley.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Gift; Richard Edward Sharpless, 2018-02-19
24 audio microcassettes; 5 audio cassettes held in separate box.
- Language of description
- Script of description