Greaves, Rose

Rose L.
Greaves, PhD
Year Inducted: 
Rose Greaves
  • International Expert on History of Iran, particularly petroleum and oil history
  • 1959-1967: Company Historian for British Petroleum Company Ltd.
  • Fellow of the Royal Historical Society of England
  • 1987, 1993: Public Service Awards for Military History Teaching in US Military Schools
  • 1996: United States Army Award for Public Service

Rose Louise Greaves, Professor Emeritus of History and Professor of Russia and East European Studies, has been student of the Middle East for over a quarter of a century.  She is an expert on petroleum and oil in the Iran area and has worked extensively with the United States Military as a professor of Military History.

Her grandmother was one of first women to attain a college education in the state of Kansas; she graduated with a BA from Baker University in 1888.  Greaves continued this legacy by attending the University of Kansas.  She was a student in KU’s History department at a very interesting and transitional period for study, just after World War II ended.  She was one of the founding members and the first President of the KU Chapter of Phi Alpha Theta, an international history honor society.   She graduated with her BA in 1947, her MA in 1949, and her PhD in British History in 1952.  She earned a second PhD from the University of London in 1953 on a Fulbright scholarship.  She has also received a Carnegie Foundation European Center Research Fellowship and a 1975-76 Research Fellowship from the American Association of University Women. 

Professor Greaves began teaching at the University of Kansas in 1968.  Other faculty appointments in her career have included Bedford College at the University of London, the University of Toronto, St. Antony’s College at the University of Oxford, as a visiting scholar at Wolfson College at the University of Cambridge, and the University of Pittsburgh’s Semester at Sea programs.

From 1959-67, Professor Greaves worked as a Company Historian for the British Petroleum Company Ltd.  From this experience, she has built a research career off of her expertise on that industry and Iran.  Her writings on Persia (Iran) have been published in a number of books and magazines; she was a special guest at the Iran-US Symposium in Washington, D.C.  The 1967 edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica contains an article written by her on the history of petroleum.  She also contributed a chapter entitled “Britain, Persia, and India, 1722-1922” for the prestigious Cambridge History of Iran, vol vii.  She has been called upon to present seminars in Rome on the changing balance of the Persian Gulf and oil price problems.  For her research projects, she has traveled widely in the Middle East and Central Asia.  These forays have included a year-long stay in Lebanon to study Arabic and the retracing of the route of a 19th century British soldier-scholar in the mountains of Pakistan.  Professor Greaves is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society of England, as well as an elected member and American Secretary of the Royal Central Asian Society. 

Professor Greaves also has extensive service with the United States Military for her expertise in military history.  For her work as a visiting professor, she received Service Awards in 1987 from the Special Warfare Center and School at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, and in 1993 from the US Military Academy at West Point.  In 1996, General John Mountcastle, Army Chief of Military History in Washington, D.C. travelled to KU to present Professor Greaves with a U.S. Army Award for Public Service; she was a member of the Advisory Committee to the Office of the Chief of Military History and completed a four-year tour of service with them.  Although she became a Professor Emeritus in 2001, she has continued to be active on work over the conflicts with Afghanistan and the Taliban in 2001 and Iraq in 2003.

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