Trowbridge Harris Ford, professor and writer on British constitutional history as well as gadfly independent investigator, died peacefully at his home in New Haven, Connecticut on July 26, 2021. Trow was born in El Paso, TX, on November 9, 1929 to the late Brig. Gen. William Wallace Ford and Alice Trowbridge Harris Ford.
After a childhood of moving from one Army base to the next, Trow attended the Phillips Exeter Academy in Exeter, New Hampshire. Upon graduating from Exeter in 1949, Trow entered Columbia College, where he earned his BA in 1952. Soon drafted into the Army, he served in the Counter Intelligence Corps in Paris, France where he witnessed the early Cold War US-USSR intelligence rivalry. Discharged in 1955, Trow worked briefly as a reporter and sports editor of the Raleigh, NC Times before returning to Columbia to pursue a PhD.
Trow looked back on his Army years with mixed feelings:
“Service life is the closest America ever has come to the welfare state with one's material and physical needs basically satisfied, though at terrible mental, cultural and psychological costs. I shall never forget how my childhood chums were always wondering why my family had some bookcases containing some of the world's classics. They were a local wonder, like collections of space rocks, or clerical relics. It was to compensate for this deprivation that I was sent off from the boondocks to a New England prep school at the end of WWII, and then on to college as the Cold War was heating up.”
On October 15, 1960, Trow married Isabel Clahr of New York City. They were later divorced and she predeceased him.
Trow won his doctorate in Public Law and Government from Columbia in 1967, with a dissertation on the pivotal 19th-century British reformer, Lord High Chancellor Henry Brougham. After teaching as an adjunct at Columbia, Trow taught political science at the University of Maine and Heidelberg University (OH). From 1967 to 1986, Trow was a professor of political science at the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, MA, where he taught courses on U.K. and Irish politics and Soviet foreign policy. During his teaching years, and prompted by the many doubts surrounding the Warren Report on the Kennedy assassination, Trow became an outspoken debunker of almost every official account of assassinations, wars and foreign affairs.
On his retirement from teaching, Trow spent a year as the sports editor of the Ridgefield, CT Press before moving to Portugal and then Sweden. He continued to write energetically as an editor of Eye Spy magazine and was a frequent contributor to the Veterans Today website. At the same time he published numerous academic articles as well as biographies of Lord Brougham (2 vols.) and Albert Venn Dicey.
Trow returned to the US in 2012, living in New Haven with his beloved dog Domino and still writing with enthusiasm. He was a generous supporter of charities, especially those benefiting wildlife and Native Americans. He is survived, and missed, by his brother Dr. John P. Ford of Unadilla, NY; ten nieces and nephews; and their many descendants. Donations in Trow’s name can be made to Oxfam America, Inc., at 226 Causeway Street, 5th Floor, Boston, MA 02114. Arrangements were handled by the Hawley Lincoln Memorial, 424 Elm Street New Haven.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Trowbridge Ford, please visit our floral store.