Chronology of Mumford's Life
  • 1895  Born October 19 in Flushing, New York.
  • 1909  Enters Stuyvesant High School to prepare to become an engineer.
  • 1912  Decides to become a writer; enrolls in City College of New York.
  • 1915 Discovers writings of Patrick Geddes, his mentor; become a student of the city and surveys New York Regional on foot.
  • 1918  Joins U.S. Navy.
  • 1919  Mustered out of the navy; joins staff of The Dial and meets Sophia Wittenberg, his future wife.
  • 1920  Moves to London to become editor of the Sociological Review; returns to New York and writes for The Freeman.
  • 1921  Marries Sophia Wittenberg.
  • 1922  Published The Story of Utopias while living in Greenwich Village; moves to Brooklyn Heights.
  • 1923  Co-founded of the Regional Planning Association of American (RPAA); helps RPAA plan Sunnyside Gardens, Queens.
  • 1924  Publishes Sticks and Stones, his first book on architecture.
  • 1925  Son Geddes born on July 5; lectures in Geneva and visits Patrick Geddes in Edinburgh; moves to Sunnyside Gardens.
  • 1926  First summer in Amenia, New York; publishes The Golden Day; helps found The American Caravan.
  • 1927  After visit to Chicago writes essays rediscovering the Chicago School of architecture.
  • 1928  Helps RPAA plan Radburn, in Fair Lawn, New Jersey.
  • 1929  Publishes Herman Melville; begins part-time visiting professorship at Dartmouth College.
  • 1931  Publishes The Brown Decades; joins The New Yorker staff -- writes "The Sky Line" and "The Art Galleries" columns.
  • 1932  Begins research in Europe for Renewal of Life series.
  • 1934  Publishes Technics and Civilization; appointed to New York City Board of Higher Education.
  • 1935  Daughter Alison born on April 28.
  • 1936  Moves to Amenia, New York.
  • 1938  Publishes The Culture of Cities; prepares planning reports for city of Honolulu and for the Pacific Northwest Regional  Planning Commission; writes screenplay for The City; intense involvement in battle against American neutrality.
  • 1939  Publishes Men Must Act.
  • 1940  Publishes Faith  for Living; joins Committee to Defend America by Aiding the Allies.
  • 1941  Ends friendship with Frank Lloyd Wright and others over issue of American neutrality.
  • 1942  Moves to California to join faculty of Stanford University -- helps design new humanities program.
  • 1944  Resigns from Stanford and returns to Amenia; publishes The Condition of Man; son Geddes killed in combat in Italy on September 13.
  • 1945  Moves to Hanover, New Hampshire, to be near close friends.
  • 1946  Visits England to advise on postwar urban planning; publishes Values for Survival.
  • 1947  Publishes Green Memories, a biography of his son; begins campaign against use and development of the atomic bomb.
  • 1948  Moves back to New York City for four years; battle with Robert Moses over Stuyvesant Town.
  • 1951  Beginning of ten-year association with University of Pennsylvania as a visiting professor; publishes The Conduct of Life, final volume of Renewal of Life series.
  • 1952  Publishes Art and Technics.
  • 1956  Publishes The Transformations of Man.
  • 1957  Research trip to Europe for his history of the city; begins visiting professorship at MIT.
  • 1958  Leads compaign against Robert Moses's plan to build roadway through Washington Square Park in New York City.
  • 1961  Publishes The City in History -- wins National Book Award; visiting professor at University of California, Berkeley.
  • 1962  Returns to Amernia to work on autobiography and write a two-volume history of technology and human development.
  • 1963  Stops writing "The Sky Line" column for The New Yorker.
  • 1964  Drafts city plan for Oxford, England; awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
  • 1965  Protests U.S. involvement in Vietnam.
  • 1967  Testifies before U.S. Senate subcommittee on urban renewal; publishes The Myth of the Machine: I. Technics and Human Development.
  • 1968  Supports Eugene McCarthy's bid for presidential nomination; publishes The Urban Prospect.
  • 1970  Publishes The Myth of the Machine: II: The Pentagon of Power.
  • 1972 Awarded the National Medal for Literature; publishes Interpretations and Forecasts.
  • 1975  Made honorary Knight Commander of the British Empire; publishes Findings and Keepings.
  • 1976  Went to Paris to accept Prix Mondial del Duca for lifetime contributions to letters.
  • 1978  Begins uncompleted history of human evolution, his final literary project.
  • 1979  Publishes My Works and Days; breaks with his publishers, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich.
  • 1982  Publishes autobiography, Sketches from Life -- nominated for American Book Award.
  • 1986  Awarded the National Medal of Arts.
  • 1990  Died in Amenia, New York on January 26 at the age of 94.