The Richard J. Milbauer Program in Southern history was founded in 1983 thanks to a generous donation from the Richard Milbauer estate. The Milbauer program facilitates interaction between students and scholars, including at the Milbauer reception during the annual meeting of the Southern Historical Association and at the Milbauer seminar and lecture series each spring.
The Milbauer Seminar in Southern history provides a forum in which graduate students have their current research critiqued by their peers. Moreover, the seminar fosters an environment in which students interact with and learn from visiting historians. As part of the seminar, the program brings scholars to the University of Florida for two days, during which they participate in a series of one-on-one meetings, an evening reception, and a graduate student luncheon. The scholar’s visit culminates in a three-hour lecture, which includes a presentation of their recent work and a critique of one student’s conference-style paper.
Richard J. Milbauer graduated from the University of Florida in 1955 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration, and in 1958 with a bachelor’s degree in literary law. In 1983, Milbauer’s estate endowed an eminent scholar chair at the University of Florida. The Milbauer professorship was occupied from 1983 to 2004 by Bertram Wyatt-Brown, distinguished historian of the American South and author, among many works, of Southern Honor: Ethics and Behavior in the Old South (1982).