Ph.D. 1964 (English), M.A. 1958, B.A. 1956, Columbia.
Areas of Research/Interest
Early American culture, American Romanticism, biography.
Society of American Historians, American Antiquarian Society, Authors' Guild.
National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow; Guggenheim Fellow; Edgar Award, Mystery Writers of America; Bancroft Prize for American History; Pulitzer Prize in Biography
Begin Again: A Biography of John Cage. New York: Knopf. 2010.
Lightning Man: The Accursed Life of Samuel F. B. Morse. New York: Knopf. 2003.
Houdini!!! New York: HarperCollins Publishers. 1996.
Edgar A. Poe: Mournful and Never-Ending Remembrance. New York: HarperCollins Publishers. 1991.
The Life and Times of Cotton Mather. New York: Harper and Row. 1984.
A Cultural History of the American Revolution. New York: T. Y. Crowell. 1976.