Sheldon Hanft, Ph.D.



Dr. Kay R. Dickson, “Sheldon Hanft, Ph.D.,” Appalachian State University Libraries Digital Collections, accessed June 15, 2024,

Social Bookmarking


Allowed tags: <p>, <a>, <em>, <strong>, <ul>, <ol>, <li>


Sheldon Hanft, Ph.D.


Appalachian State University
Universities and colleges--Faculty


Dr. Kay R. Dickson




Biographical sketches


Boone (N.C.)

Spatial Coverage

Temporal Coverage



Professor Emeritus

Biographical Text

Professor Emeritus of History Sheldon Hanft (August, 1939-), is the son of Gussie (née Uri) and Morris Hanft. Hanft was reared in Brooklyn, New York and had one brother, Lester Hanft (deceased). Hanft earned his B.A. degree from the City University of New York in 1961. He received his M.A. degree in 1964 and his Ph.D. degree in 1969 from New York University. In 1961, Hanft married Beryl Anne (née August), in New York City, New York. Beryl Anne earned an M.A. degree in psychology from the City University of New York and an M.A. degree in school psychology from Appalachian State University. She was the school psychologist for Avery County Schools in western North Carolina. In 1989, she had spinal cord surgery, which left her wheelchair bound. Returning to work in 1990, she continued to serve all nine schools in Avery County as the only school psychologist until her retirement in 1998. Sadly, she passed away on January 10, 2007. The Hanfts have three daughters, all of whom were born in New York City, New York, and four grandchildren. The Hanfts' oldest daughter, Lila, graduated with a Ph.D. degree in English from Cornell University, Ithaca, New York. She taught English at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio, before becoming a webpage editor for "Moms on Line." She took time from her career to have two sons, Alexanda (now six years old) and Max (two-and-a-half years old), before taking her current job as a reporter for the Cleveland Jewish News. She is married to Dave Roberts, who is the municipal court judge in Cleveland. Melissa, the Hanft's middle daughter, graduated from Cornell University with a master's degree in business and labor relations. She is currently employed as the senior vice-president for Human Resources at Pantry Stores, Inc. Melissa is married to Daren Anderson, an Appalachian State graduate. He is a computer programmer for Tivoli. Melissa and Daren have two children: a son Zachory (age nine), and a daughter Zoe (age six). They are presently living in Pinehurst, North Carolina. The Hanfts' youngest daughter, Jennifer, earned an LL.D. degree from the University of Wyoming. She currently has a legal practice in Laramie, Wyoming. Dr. Hanft began his teaching career at Eli Whitney Vocational High School, Brooklyn, New York, and taught there from 1961 to 1969. After receiving his doctorate, he joined the faculty at Appalachian State University in 1969 and taught a variety of history courses. While at Appalachian State, Hanft was professionally affiliated and active in the American Historical Association, the Conference on British Studies, the Southern Conference on British Studies, the Carolinas Symposium on British Studies, the American Society for Eighteenth Century Studies, the Southern Historical Association, and the Southern Jewish Historical Association. Other professional activities and scholarly offices held by Dr. Hanft include: editorial board member (one of three) for OLAM KATAN (SMALL WORLD), a cyber Jewish History Discussion Board sponsored by Shamash and the Jewish University in Cyber Space (1996-2002); treasurer, Southeastern Regional Division of the Anti-Defamation League, and chair, as well as commentator, in the session "I'm Alabama Bound," at the Symposium on Southern Rabbis' Involvement in Black Civil Rights, cosponsored by the Southern Jewish Historical Society and the University of Memphis, March 30-April 1, 1995. In 1992, Dr. Hanft was awarded a set of The Jewish People in America by the American Jewish Historical Society director for his contributions made to Southern Jewish history. He was also awarded a sculpture by the Southern Jewish Historical Society at their annual meeting (November, 1993) in Atlanta, Georgia, for his contributions to the society. Dr. Hanft, a prolific writer, has numerous publications to his credit. Some of those include: • "Jewish Appalachians" in the Encyclopedia of Appalachia. Knoxville, Tennessee: University of Tennessee Press, 2005. • "The Anglo-Welsh Union, 1536," Great Events From History, 1454-1600. Pasadena, California: Salem Press, 2004. • "Heredity Peers are removed from the House of Lords," in Great Events: 1900-2001. Revised edition, 8 volumes. Pasadena, California: Salem Press, 2002. 8, 3104-3106. • "Anglo-Scottish Wars, 1513-1560" in Magill's Guide to Military History. 5 volumes. Pasadena, California: Salem Press, 2001. 1, 93-94. • "King James IV (Scotland), Thomas Walsingham, Sir John Fortesque in Clayton Drees", The Late Medieval Age of Crises and Renewal: A Biographical Dictionary, 1300-1550. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 2001, 164-65, 246-7, 497-98. • "The Thomas Jefferson Memorial", America's Historic Sites. Tracey Irons-George, ed. 3 volumes. Pasadena, California: Salem Press, October 2000, 1, 290-292. Dr. Hanft retired in December 2004 and was awarded emeritus status by the Board of Trustees. In his spare time, he enjoys racquetball, reading, tennis, and chess. He also plans to travel, do volunteer work, and continue his writing during his retirement years. Sources: Appalachian State University files and personal correspondence. -Dr. Kay R. Dickson

Social Bookmarking


Allowed tags: <p>, <a>, <em>, <strong>, <ul>, <ol>, <li>