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Obituaries

December 22, 2012

David B. Baldwin

David B. Baldwin

YORK HARBOR, MAINE — David B. Baldwin, 90, most recently of York Harbor, Maine, and formerly of Oneonta passed away on Thursday, Dec. 20, 2012, at the York Hospital in York, Maine. 

Born in Cambridge, Mass., on Feb. 9, 1922, he was educated at various schools and graduated cum laude from Harvard College in 1944. He received an M.A. from Columbia University in English and a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in American civilization in 1961.

He taught at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Northeastern University, Rutgers University and Dean Junior College (as chairman of the English Department) before coming to Hartwick College in 1964, where he remained until his retirement in 1993. He was also an editor for Arthur D. Little, management consultants.

His interest in learning and teaching always centered on American literature. Among his favorite authors was Walt Whitman, and he especially loved poetry. He was a member of the American Studies Association and the College English Association. His publications included contributions to a major reference work on Whitman.

He served on various committees at Hartwick and in the community, including the Catskill Choral Society, in which he sang bass, the Catskill Symphony Orchestra, the Center for Continuing Adult Learning and the City of Oneonta’s Board of Assessment review.

Dave married Ruth Corey, artist and former WAVE, in 1947. She died in 1993. They had four children, one of whom, David Henry, died in 2002.

Dave’s life was joyful. A Christian bent moved him to join the Catholic Church in 1990. 

He, his family and his associates had to deal with his longtime bipolar condition diagnosed in his 20s. After recovering from this initial episode while at Harvard, he worked at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute as an underwater photographer, part of wartime sonar research. After his retirement, he took up oil painting under the guidance of a professional, Paul Marsellino. The last three years were spent nearer his family at Sentry Hill in York Harbor, Maine, where he especially enjoyed giving a series of poetry readings.

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