Alfred H. Conrad

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Alfred H. Conrad
Born (1924-01-02)2 January 1924
Brooklyn, New York
Died 18 October 1970(1970-10-18) (aged 46)
Peacham, Vermont
Nationality American
Institution City College of New York
Field Economic history
Transportation economics
Alma mater Harvard University
Influences Alexander Gerschenkron
Influenced Robert Fogel

Alfred Haskell Conrad (2 January 1924 – 18 October 1970)[1] was a distinguished and popular professor of economics at Harvard University and City College of New York. He belonged to the quantitative economic current called New Economic History (Cliometrics).

Born in Brooklyn, New York,[1] Conrad attended Brooklyn Boys High and in 1947 graduated from Harvard College. There he completed a doctorate in economics in 1954 and later taught in the economics department and in the business school.

In 1958 he co-authored "The Economics of Slavery in the Antebellum South", in the Journal of Political Economy, with John R. Meyer. Using rigorous statistics, the authors concluded that the view that slavery would have disappeared without the American Civil War was "a romantic hypothesis which will not stand against the facts." This study anticipated that by Nobel-laureate Robert Fogel, who would later reach the same conclusion.[2]

Conrad was married to the poet Adrienne Rich, with whom he had three sons. He died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound in Peacham, Vermont.[1] He was 46.


  1. ^ a b c "Dr. Alfred H. Conrad, City College Professor, Dies", The New York Times (New York, New York), October 20, 1970 
  2. ^ Edward L. Glaeser, "Remembering the Father of Transportation Economics", The New York Times (Economix), October 27, 2009.