Born in Clayton, North Carolina, on October 21, 1869, William Dodd studied in the United States and in Germany before teaching history at Randolph-Macon College (1900–1908) and the University of Chicago (1908–1933). Dodd wrote extensively about the antebellum South, the Civil War and Woodrow Wilson. In 1933, he became ambassador to Germany, serving in that position until 1937. He died of pneumonia on February 9, 1940, in Loudoun County, Virginia.
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