Tutorial fell. Lat. Columbia, 1888-9; tut. Lat., 1889-95; instr. to prof. Lat., 1895-1911; Anthon prof. Lat. lang. & lit., 1911-37; prof, emeritus in residence, 1937-42; mem. Univ. Counc, 1931-7; chair, counc. on res. in human., 1933-44; ann. prof. ASCSR (AAR), 1921-2; actng. sec.-treas. Coll. Ent. Ex. Bd., 1907-8, 1915-6; fell. Am. Assn. Adv. Sci.; vice-pres., 1938.
"The State, As Conceived by Plato and Aristotle" (Columbia, 1888).
"Criticism of the Life of Horace," Columbia University Quarterly 17 (1917) 243-57; "Necrology of James Rignall Wheeler," AJP 39 (1918) 110-1; Marcus Aurelius Antoninus to Himself (New York, 1928); Literature and Liberalism, with Other Classical Papers (New York, 1936).
A native of New York, McCrea spent his entire career at Columbia, his alma mater. He not only gave of his time ,to the administration of his university by serving on the University Council and composing official university letters in Latin, but he also devoted himself to the institutions of his city, such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the American Museum of Natural History, and the New York Botanical Gardens. Columbia president Nicholas Murray Butler called him "a master interpreter of ancient Greece and Rome in terms of the intellectual and moral needs of today and tomorrow ... a scholar of the finest and highest type."