SUNY Buffalo State Oral Histories, 1975-1995
Interview with Dr. Harold Peterson


Interview with Dr. Harold Peterson


Sister Martin Joseph Jones

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Dr. Harold F. Peterson earned his B.A. degree from Knox, College, a master’s degree from the University of Minnesota; and a Ph.D. from Duke University. Dr. Peterson joined the State University College at Buffalo, then known as the State Teachers College at Buffalo, in 1933. Dr. Peterson was named “University Professor” in 1969 and designated professor emeritus of the History and Social Studies Department when he retired in 1970. At the time of his retirement, he was chairman of the department. Dr. Peterson was the first faculty member of the State University College at Buffalo chosen to receive the State University Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching. In 1973, he was named a Distinguished Professor of the State University System.

In addition to teaching at the State University College at Buffalo, Dr. Peterson was visiting professor at the University of Buffalo for several years. Beyond those scholarly achievements, Dr. Peterson was also a community leader. He was one of the founders of the Buffalo Council on World Affairs (who cited him as “one of the nation’s leading authorities on Latin-American history”). Dr. Peterson also was a pioneer in educational television, teaching college level courses on Latin America at WNED-TV in Buffalo. Dr. Peterson was a veteran of WWII, serving as an Army officer with military intelligence. He was an officer in the Army Reserves from 1946-1955. Dr. Harold F. Peterson passed away on November 9, 1983.


SUNY Buffalo State Oral History Project, 1975-1995

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Archives & Special Collections Department, E. H. Butler Library

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Oral History

Peterson_Harold_Full_Interview_03-15-1979.mp3 (79875 kB)
Interview with Dr. Harold Peterson

Peterson_Harold_Full_Interview_Transcript_1979-03-15.pdf (1163 kB)

Interview with Dr. Harold Peterson