Professor Emeritus David Smith 1929-2009

Contact: Joe Carr at (207) 581-3571

ORONO — Professor Emeritus David C. Smith, a Maine native and University of Maine graduate who served on the UMaine history faculty for nearly 25 years before his 1994 retirement, has died at the age of 80.  Smith, who was born in Lewiston to a mother whose Maine roots dated to 1628 and a father who migrated from maritime Canada to the U.S. as a child, was also active in the community and in politics, serving as a delegate to the 1974 and 1976 Democratic National Conventions.  By his own account, Smith focused his scholarly activities in four “distinct areas of historical thought,” including the history of agriculture and forestry; historical climatology; the history of women; and the life and times of H.G. Wells.  He also wrote “The First Century: A History of the University of Maine, 1865-1965” and “A History of the Maine Agricultural Experiment Station 1885-1978.”

“David Smith was among the University of Maine’s most distinguished and influential faculty members,” says UMaine President Robert Kennedy.  “His prolific scholarship matched his wide range of interests, including agricultural history, the life and influence of H.G. Wells, and even the history of UMaine itself.  David exemplified the land-grant university philosophy in many ways, by applying his life’s work to studying and teaching in areas critical to understanding our state in historical context.  From his days as a UMaine graduate student through decades on our faculty, David Smith was truly a UMaine institution and he will be missed.”

There will be a private family gathering in the spring.  A Tuesday Bangor Daily News obituary is online here.