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Historian and Novelist Thomas Fleming Has Passed Away at Age 90

Historians in the News
tags: obituary



Related Link In Memory of Tom Fleming By J.L. Bell

HNN Editor:  Tom Fleming was a founding member of the Board of Directors of the History News Network.  He saw the need for the website and eagerly embraced the cause.  He was without question the most active member of the Board, contributing scores of high-quality pieces through the years.  But in particular it will be his enthusiasm for history that made the greatest impression.  No aspect of history failed to excite him.  His great gift, of course, was the fluidity of his writing.  Tom could tell a story!  He will be missed.  –  Rick Shenkman

Novelist and historian, died peacefully at his New York City home at the age of 90. 

Born July 5th, 1927 in Jersey City, New Jersey, he was a son of Thomas J. Fleming, who was commissioned in the field in World War I and served for three decades in Jersey City politics, and Katherine Dolan Fleming, a former school teacher. He graduated from St. Peter's Prep in Jersey City in 1945, served in the Navy on board the USS Topeka, and graduated from Fordham University with a B.A. with Honors in 1950. 

After brief stints as a journalist and magazine editor, he began a career as a writer in 1960 with his first book, Now We Are Enemies, an account of the Battle of Bunker Hill. For the next 57 years, he pursued his passion for writing both fiction and history. He wrote 23 novels, including the bestselling The Officers' Wives (1982) and 25 books on American history, including the widely acclaimed account of the Burr Hamilton conflict, Duel (1999). He also wrote books for young readers and collaborated with Margaret Truman on her book about her father, President Harry S. Truman. 

He was a frequent guest on C-Span, PBS, A&E, and the History Channel and wrote the companion volume for the PBS series, Liberty: The American Revolution. A complete catalogue of his work appears at: thomasflemingwriter.com. He also served as president of the Society of American Historians and PEN American Center. 

For 55 years he enjoyed summers at his beach house on Magna Lane in Westbrook, CT, where he self-published the Magna Magnet, a limited circulation newspaper that documented the foibles of his family and friends on Magna Lane, modeled after Ben Franklin's Craven St. Gazette

He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Alice Mulcahey Fleming, four children, Alice Fleming (Gary Feder), Thomas (Susan), David (Sharon) and Richard, and seven grandchildren, Noah Feder, Kathryn Feder Cooper, and Helen, Lucie, Pauline, Madeleine and John Fleming as well as his nieces Kathryn Fleming Suse and Margaret Fleming Cushman. He was predeceased by his brother Eugene Fleming. 

The family will receive visitors at the Krtil Funeral Home, 1297 First Ave. (70th St.) on Tuesday, July 25th, 2017 from 5:00pm-9:00pm; a Funeral Mass will be held at St. Catherine of Siena Church, 411 East 68th St., on Wednesday, July 26th at 10:00am. A memorial service will be held in the fall. Donations in his memory can be made to the Friends of Westbrook Public Library, 61 Goodspeed Drive, Westbrook, CT 06498.

Read entire article at NYT Death Notice


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