Professor Donald Treadgold, UW Scholar Of Russian History
"Twentieth Century Russia." "The History of Christianity." "The West in Russia and China." "Freedom: A History." The books Donald Treadgold wrote are classics.
In middle age he taught himself Mandarin.
At 70, he packed his bags for Moscow to gather materials for a landmark exhibit on Soviet documents at the U.S. Library of Congress.
But hard as he worked, his daughter Laura Puckett recalled, "he worked with his door open." He always found time to help her with her math.
"There's the teacher, there's the scholar, there's the person," Puckett said. "He excelled in all three areas."
Professor Treadgold, a renowned scholar of Russian history at the University of Washington and a man noted for his devotion to students, died Tuesday (Dec. 13) of acute leukemia. He was 72.
"He was an absolutely first-rate scholar," said Peter Sugar, a UW professor of East European history who worked with Professor Treadgold for 35 years. "He was probably the most dedicated and honest man I ever knew.
"His loyalty was endless. Once you were his friend, you were his friend through thick or thin."
Sugar said Professor Treadgold was in the midst of revising his "History of Christianity" when he was diagnosed with leukemia and that his death came as a shock. Professor Treadgold had been in excellent condition, Sugar said, playing handball twice a week.
Born in Silverton, Ore., Professor Treadgold attended the University of Oregon, where he met his wife, Alva, and served in military intelligence during World War II. He went on to Harvard and to Oxford University as a Rhodes scholar, where he received a doctorate in history in 1950.
A longtime editor of the Slavic Review, Professor Treadgold received many awards during his career, including Guggenheim Fellowships and an award for distinguished service from the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies. In 1983, he was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
"Professor Treadgold's name has been synonymous with the development of Slavic studies in the United States since the early 1950s," a colleague, Daniel Waugh, said in a statement Thursday.
"He was the principal architect of this university's nationally recognized Russian and Eastern European program, and a man who trained a whole generation of Washington citizens as specialists in the field."
Professor Treadgold is survived by his wife and three children: Warren Treadgold of Miami, and Catherine Treadgold and Laura Puckett, both of Seattle.
The public is invited to a funeral service to be held at 1 p.m. Tuesday at Horizon House, 900 University St.
The family asks that donations be made to the publications fund of the Russian, Eastern Europe and Central Asian Program of the Jackson School of International Studies at the UW.
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