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Date: May 14, 2009
Contact: Anne Strong
Telephone: (301) 279-9697

History Associates’ Kenneth D. Durr Completes Biography of New York Political Boss

History Associates executive vice president Kenneth D. Durr recently completed  Life of the Party: Kenneth F. Simpson and the Survival of the Republicans in 1930s New York. The biography details the life of Simpson, a little-known but influential figure in the New York political machine.

Life of the Party  follows Simpson from his days in the Knickerbocker Greys through his early law career to his life in politics. In this meticulously written volume, Dr. Durr draws on documentation from Simpson’s own hand and from the papers of fellow politicians Wendell Willkie, Bruce Barton, and Thomas Dewey among others. Through Simpson’s life story, Dr. Durr examines the Republicans’ inward struggle to chart a course for their party and outward struggle to reverse their minority status in national politics. Whether as a New  York County Republican Chairman fighting to defeat Tammany Hall or a United States Congressman working on the Lend Lease Bill, Simpson always kept his eye on the next election, his aim to advance the liberal Republicanism that defined his political beliefs.

Dr. Durr is director of the History Division at History Associates Incorporated in Rockville, Maryland. His other publications include  A Company with a Mission: Rodman Rockefeller and the International Basic Economy Corporation, 1947-1985;  Behind the Backlash: White Working Class Politics in Baltimore, 1940-1980; and  The Roadway Story. He received his doctoral degree in twentieth-century American political and social history from American University.

About History Associates
For more than thirty years the historians and archivists at History Associates have demonstrated that history is valuable in the market as well as the marketplace of ideas. They provide professional corporate histories, exhibit content, interpretive planning, historical research, archival services, and collections management services to clients throughout the United States and around the world. History Associates strives to be The Best Company in History®, serving corporate, government, legal, and nonprofit clients from its headquarters in Rockville, Maryland. For more information, call (301) 279-9697 or visit

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