Passing of Prof. Joe M. Richardson


The Department of History mourns the loss of Joe M. Richardson, Emeritus Professor of History. Joe joined the F.S.U. history department in 1964, after completing his PhD at F.S.U. the year before. He remained a member of the department until his retirement in 2005. Among Joe’s many and lasting contributions, he was the first faculty member to teach African American history at F.S.U. and among the first to do so anywhere in the American South. In addition to the hundreds of undergraduates who came to prize Joe’s gentle and inspiring teaching style, several dozen graduate students—including twenty doctoral students—completed their studies under Joe’s direction. Joe’s scholarly contributions were extensive and wide-ranging. His first book, The Negro in the Reconstruction of Florida, 1865-1877 (1965) was one of the earliest in a series of revisionist studies of this crucial period in American history. Joe’s later work focused on African-Americans and higher education and included Talladega College: The First Century(1990), co-authored with F.S.U. colleague Maxine D. Jones.