Dr. Robert V. Haynes
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Dr. Robert V. Haynes passed away peacefully on October 23, 2021 with his eldest daughter at his side. Bob was a loving parent, brother and uncle, and he is predeceased by his devoted wife, Martha Farr Haynes, to whom he was married for 64 years as well as his parents, Robert Raymond Haynes and Gladys Vaughn Haynes. He is remembered by his brother James Franklin Haynes, sister-in-law Jonita Haynes, sister Frances Ann Tomlin, daughter Catherine Ann Haynes, son-in-law Reuel "Bo" Platt, daughter Carolyn Alice Haynes, son Charles Allen Haynes, daughter-in-law Louise Creagh as well as nieces and nephews and close family friends Terry & Carla Reagan, Cheryl and David Barbee, and Sheila Croucher.
Bob had superb taste in Scotch, was a lively storyteller, enjoyed golfing and treating friends and family to "don't hold back" dinners, and was extremely proud of his three children. But his passion was U.S. history, which emerged when he was just five years old and took it upon himself to memorize all of the U.S. presidents.
Bob was born on November 28, 1929 in Nashville, Tennessee, graduated from Central High School in 1947 in Jackson, Mississippi, served in the United States Air Force, and then earned a bachelor's degree from Millsaps College in 1952. During that same year, he married Martha Louise Farr on Christmas Day. Together they moved to Houston, Texas in 1953 where they eventually raised their three children. In 1959, he earned a PhD from Rice University, joined the faculty in the Department of History at the University of Houston that same year, and became a full professor in 1967.
While at UH, he also served as acting director of Afro-American Studies, director of libraries and deputy provost. In 1984, he moved to Bowling Green, Kentucky to become vice president of academic affairs at Western Kentucky University, a role in which he continued to serve until 1996.
During the course of his career, Dr. Haynes published several monographs, including A Night of Violence: the Houston Riot of 1917 and The Natchez District and the American Revolution. In 2010, he published The Mississippi Territory and the Southwest Frontier, and in 2015, he received the prestigious Richard Wright Literary Excellence Award for his scholarship. In 2018, he published a monograph on the early history of the Presbyterian Church of Bowling Green, Kentucky.
The passion for knowledge which was borne in his early childhood continued until the very end of his life. He dedicated his last few years to voraciously reading historical scholarship, writing book reviews, and authoring his memoir. His indefatigable quest for learning, his sardonic humor, and his generous love and dedication to his family and friends will be missed.
The family will plan a private memorial service in the future. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that memorial donations be made to the following organizations:
The Presbyterian Church of Bowling Green, https://bgpres.org/give
The Filson Historical Society, https://filsonhistorical.org/