Welcome to American National Biography Online

  • Over 19,000 biographies of significant, influential or notorious figures from American history written by prominent scholars
  • Life of the day now available as an email to your inbox or by RSS feed
  • Have questions about how to use the redesigned website? Check out our Help page for a video demo and detailed instructions or read through our FAQs.

Learn more

Letter from Susan Ware, Editor

May 2018

This month we’ve added fourteen biographies to the site, focusing on lives that have helped tell the story of American history and culture. From Pulitzer Prize-winning poets like James Schulyer, to editors like Ursula Nordstrom who shaped the readings of a generation, and LGBT rights activist Barbara Gittings.

Studs Terkel

Studs Terkel (1912–2008), oral historian, radio broadcaster, and political activist, won acclaim for celebrating the uncelebrated. He received the Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction in 1985 for The Good War, and was awarded the National Humanities Medal and National Medal of Arts presented at the White House in 1997.