Authors: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

62 Motivational Quotes By David McCullough That Will Keep You High-Spirited

Famous As: American Historian & Author
Born On: July 7, 1933
Died On: August 7, 2022
Born In: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Died At Age: 89
David McCullough is regarded as the pioneer of modern history. He is also a renowned lecturer, author and narrator. He was a member of ‘Skulls and Bones’, and was an apprentice at media giants like ‘Time’, ‘Life’, ‘American Heritage’ and also the ‘United States Information Agency’. He viewed every topic that had not been written on before as a potential book. His works on President Truman and Founding Father John Adams won him Pulitzer Prize in 1993 and 2002 respectively. He also bagged the National Book Award twice. He has also received the Presidential Medal of Freedom which is the highest civilian award in the United States. McCullough is also acclaimed for his works as a narrator, film presenter and a TV host. His sayings and thoughts will keep your spirits high. ‘The Johnstown Flood’ was his first book and his latest book ‘The Wright Brothers’ continue to be successful in the market. The year 2016 also marked 50 years of his association with publisher, Simon and Schuster. David continues to entertain both readers and writers. His simple yet powerful quotes are sure to give you an adrenaline rush. 
Writing is thinking. To write well is to think clearly. That's why it's so hard.

Writing is thinking. To write well is to think clearly. That's why it's so hard." (Interview with NEH chairman Bruce Cole, Humanities, July/Aug. 2002, Vol. 23/No. 4)

David McCullough
Real success is finding your lifework in the work that you love.

Real success is finding your lifework in the work that you love.

David McCullough
History is a guide to navigation in perilous times. History is who we are and why we are the way we are.

History is a guide to navigation in perilous times. History is who we are and why we are the way we are.

David McCullough
Nothing ever invented provides such sustenance, such infinite reward for time spent, as a good book.

Nothing ever invented provides such sustenance, such infinite reward for time spent, as a good book.

David McCullough
If you get down about the state of American culture, just remember there are still more public libraries in this country than there are McDonalds.

If you get down about the state of American culture, just remember there are still more public libraries in this country than there are McDonalds.

David McCullough
Our obligations to our country never cease but with our lives. - John Adams

Our obligations to our country never cease but with our lives. - John Adams

David McCullough
You can't be a full participant in our democracy if you don't know our history.

You can't be a full participant in our democracy if you don't know our history.

David McCullough
When a friend of Abigail and John Adams was killed at Bunker Hill, Abigail's response was to write a letter to her husband and include these words,

When a friend of Abigail and John Adams was killed at Bunker Hill, Abigail's response was to write a letter to her husband and include these words, "My bursting heart must find vent at my pen.

David McCullough
The longer I live, the more I read, the more patiently I think and the more anxiously I inquire, the less I seem to know...do justly. Love mercy. Walk humbly. This is enough.

The longer I live, the more I read, the more patiently I think and the more anxiously I inquire, the less I seem to know...do justly. Love mercy. Walk humbly. This is enough.

David McCullough
No harm's done to history by making it something someone would want to read.

No harm's done to history by making it something someone would want to read." (The Course of Human Events, NEH Jefferson Lecture in the Humanities 2003)

David McCullough
You've got to marinate your head, in that time and culture.
You've got to become them.

You've got to marinate your head, in that time and culture. You've got to become them." (Speaking about researching, and reading, and immersing yourself in History)

David McCullough
I think that we need history as much as we need bread or water or love.

I think that we need history as much as we need bread or water or love.

David McCullough
If I were giving a young man advice as to how he might succeed in life, I would say to him, pick out a good father and mother, and begin life in Ohio. WILBUR WRIGHT

If I were giving a young man advice as to how he might succeed in life, I would say to him, pick out a good father and mother, and begin life in Ohio. WILBUR WRIGHT

David McCullough
You have overburdened your argument with ostentatious erudition.

You have overburdened your argument with ostentatious erudition." Spoken by Abigail Adams

David McCullough
Only those who [do] nothing [make] no mistakes.

Only those who [do] nothing [make] no mistakes.

David McCullough
The great thing about the arts is that you can only learn to do it by doing it.

The great thing about the arts is that you can only learn to do it by doing it.

David McCullough
How can we know who we are and where we are going if we don't know anything about where we have come from and what we have been through, the courage shown, the costs paid, to be where we are?

How can we know who we are and where we are going if we don't know anything about where we have come from and what we have been through, the courage shown, the costs paid, to be where we are?

David McCullough
Nobody ever lived in the past.

Nobody ever lived in the past.

David McCullough
All the money anyone needs is just enough to prevent one from being a burden on others.

All the money anyone needs is just enough to prevent one from being a burden on others.

David McCullough
No bird soars in a calm. WILBUR WRIGHT

No bird soars in a calm. WILBUR WRIGHT

David McCullough
The source of our suffering has been our timidity. We have been afraid to think....Let us dare to read, think, speak, write.

The source of our suffering has been our timidity. We have been afraid to think....Let us dare to read, think, speak, write.

David McCullough
It was a day and age that saw no reason why one could not learn whatever was required - learn vitally anything - by the close study of books.

It was a day and age that saw no reason why one could not learn whatever was required - learn vitally anything - by the close study of books.

David McCullough
The past after all is only another name for someone else's present.

The past after all is only another name for someone else's present.

David McCullough
Curiosity is what separates us from the cabbages. It's accelerative. The more we know, the more we want to know.

Curiosity is what separates us from the cabbages. It's accelerative. The more we know, the more we want to know.

David McCullough
I lament the want of a liberal education. I feel the mist of ignorance to surround me - Nathanael Greene

I lament the want of a liberal education. I feel the mist of ignorance to surround me - Nathanael Greene

David McCullough
We learn much by tribulation, and by adversity our hearts are made better.

We learn much by tribulation, and by adversity our hearts are made better.

David McCullough
Remove yourself, sir!

Remove yourself, sir!

David McCullough
Indeed, bribery, favoritism, and corruption in a great variety of forms were rampant not only in politics, but in all levels of society.

Indeed, bribery, favoritism, and corruption in a great variety of forms were rampant not only in politics, but in all levels of society.

David McCullough
We dared to hope we had invented something that would bring lasting peace to the earth. But we were wrong...

We dared to hope we had invented something that would bring lasting peace to the earth. But we were wrong...

David McCullough
The best dividends on the labor invested have invariably come from seeking more knowledge rather than more power.” Signed Wilbur and Orville Wright, March 12, 1906.

The best dividends on the labor invested have invariably come from seeking more knowledge rather than more power.” Signed Wilbur and Orville Wright, March 12, 1906.

David McCullough
A leader must look and act the part.

A leader must look and act the part.

David McCullough
In truth, the situation was worse than they realized, and no one perceived this as clearly as Washington. Seeing things as they were, and not as he would wish them to be, was one of his salient strengths.

In truth, the situation was worse than they realized, and no one perceived this as clearly as Washington. Seeing things as they were, and not as he would wish them to be, was one of his salient strengths.

David McCullough
There are no people on earth in whom a spirit of enthusiastic zeal is so readily kindled, and burns so remarkably, as Americans

There are no people on earth in whom a spirit of enthusiastic zeal is so readily kindled, and burns so remarkably, as Americans

David McCullough
As the Sword was the last resort for the preservation of our liberties, so it ought to be the first thing laid aside when those liberties are firmly established

As the Sword was the last resort for the preservation of our liberties, so it ought to be the first thing laid aside when those liberties are firmly established

David McCullough
I feel that as much as I enjoy loafing, there is something higher for which to live.

I feel that as much as I enjoy loafing, there is something higher for which to live.

David McCullough
Vivez joyeux” was the old saying. “Live joyfully.

Vivez joyeux” was the old saying. “Live joyfully.

David McCullough
A man who will steal for me will steal from me.

A man who will steal for me will steal from me." Theodore Roosevelt, dismissing on the spot one of his best cowhands who was about to claim for his boss an unmarked animal.

David McCullough
The only way to compose myself and collect my thoughts,

The only way to compose myself and collect my thoughts," he wrote in his diary,"is to set down at my table, place my diary before me, and take my pen into my hand.

David McCullough
Because it’s of more importance to community, that innocence should be protected, than it is, that guilt should be punished.

Because it’s of more importance to community, that innocence should be protected, than it is, that guilt should be punished.

David McCullough
Mankind will in time discover that unbridled majorities are as tyrannical and cruel as unlimited despots,” and

Mankind will in time discover that unbridled majorities are as tyrannical and cruel as unlimited despots,” and

David McCullough
Honesty, sincerity, and openness, I esteem essential marks of a good mind,

Honesty, sincerity, and openness, I esteem essential marks of a good mind,

David McCullough
To me history ought to be a source of pleasure. It isn't just part of our civic responsibility. To me it's an enlargement of the experience of being alive, just the way literature or art or music is.

To me history ought to be a source of pleasure. It isn't just part of our civic responsibility. To me it's an enlargement of the experience of being alive, just the way literature or art or music is.

David McCullough
Those for whom things came easily usually made less of an effort, not more.

Those for whom things came easily usually made less of an effort, not more.

David McCullough
Adams was both a devout Christian and an independent thinker, and he saw no conflict in that.

Adams was both a devout Christian and an independent thinker, and he saw no conflict in that.

David McCullough
Marinate your mind

Marinate your mind

David McCullough
Patience which I assure you requires more force of character than does action.

Patience which I assure you requires more force of character than does action.

David McCullough
The study of history is an antidote to the hubris of the present – the idea that everything we have, everything we do and everything we think is the ultimate, the best.

The study of history is an antidote to the hubris of the present – the idea that everything we have, everything we do and everything we think is the ultimate, the best.

David McCullough
It is in Paris that the beating of Europe’s heart is felt. Paris is the city of cities.

It is in Paris that the beating of Europe’s heart is felt. Paris is the city of cities." - Victor Hugo

David McCullough
He loved politics in large part exactly because it meant time spent with men like Cactus Jack Garner(who would be remembered for observing that the vice presidency was not worth a pitcher of warm piss).

He loved politics in large part exactly because it meant time spent with men like Cactus Jack Garner(who would be remembered for observing that the vice presidency was not worth a pitcher of warm piss).

David McCullough
Make business first, pleasure afterward, and that guarded. All the money anyone needs is just enough to prevent one from being a burden on others. He made a point of treating

Make business first, pleasure afterward, and that guarded. All the money anyone needs is just enough to prevent one from being a burden on others. He made a point of treating

David McCullough
The clock would be simple if you destroyed all the wheels... but it would not tell the time of day.” On

The clock would be simple if you destroyed all the wheels... but it would not tell the time of day.” On

David McCullough
I steer my bark with hope in the head, leaving fear astern.” Their

I steer my bark with hope in the head, leaving fear astern.” Their

David McCullough
In an exhibition wherein paintings of nudes were commonplace, that of Madame Gautreau in her black evening dress was considered scandalously erotic. -from The Greater Journey

In an exhibition wherein paintings of nudes were commonplace, that of Madame Gautreau in her black evening dress was considered scandalously erotic. -from The Greater Journey

David McCullough
A veteran artist counsels a less experienced one to start a painting using colors in the middle range so that the painter can move to more extreme colors as the work progresses.

A veteran artist counsels a less experienced one to start a painting using colors in the middle range so that the painter can move to more extreme colors as the work progresses.

David McCullough
Morality only is eternal. All the rest is balloon and bubble from the cradle to the grave.

Morality only is eternal. All the rest is balloon and bubble from the cradle to the grave.

David McCullough
Lord, grant that I may always be right, for Thou knowest I am hard to turn,

Lord, grant that I may always be right, for Thou knowest I am hard to turn,

David McCullough
Measurements

Measurements "are never enough. The artist's eye and desire to breathe life into the subject must be the deciding factors.

David McCullough
We cannot insure success, but we can deserve it.

We cannot insure success, but we can deserve it.

David McCullough
We believed in a good God, a bad Devil, and a hot Hell, and more than anything else we believed that same God did not intend man should ever fly.

We believed in a good God, a bad Devil, and a hot Hell, and more than anything else we believed that same God did not intend man should ever fly.

David McCullough
Let no girl, no gun, no cards, no flutes, no violins, no dress, no tobacco, no laziness decoy you from your books.

Let no girl, no gun, no cards, no flutes, no violins, no dress, no tobacco, no laziness decoy you from your books.

David McCullough
Lord Chatham, the King of Prussia, nay, Alexander the Great, never gained more in one campaign than the noble lord has lost-he has lost a whole continent.

Lord Chatham, the King of Prussia, nay, Alexander the Great, never gained more in one campaign than the noble lord has lost-he has lost a whole continent.

David McCullough