David Sievert Lavender
(February 4, 1910–April 26, 2003) was a well-known historian of the Western United States.
Born in Telluride, Colorado, he worked at the famous Camp Bird Mine and on his father's cattle ranch in southwestern Colorado. Lavender spent most of his life in Ojai, California. An articulate and deeply knowledgeable speaker on the political and social history of the American West, he often spoke at the annual Telluride Film Festival.
David Lavender is the author of nearly forty books on the West, including two that won Pulitzer Prize nominations. Following is partial list of notable books:
- One Man's West ISBN 0-8032-5855-0 (memoir of his life as a young man working as miner and range hand in Southwestern Colorado , written in 1943)
- The Big Divide (Doubleday, 1948) (the story of the people of the southern Rocky Mountains from Yellowstone to Santa Fe).
- Westward Vision: The Story of the Oregon Trail ISBN 0-8032-7915-9
- The Great Persuader ISBN 0-87081-476-1 (biography of Collis Huntington).
- The Great West ISBN 0-8281-0303-8 publ. 1965 (described as "The best single volume extant on the Westward Movement" by the San Francisco Chronicle)
In 2002, Stephen Ambrose was accused of plagiarizing from The Great Persuader