Fall 2010


A Note to Prospective Graduate Students



If you have found your way to this web page I assume that you have some interest in studying History with me at the University of Florida. If that is the case, welcome! I hope that the following will answer some of your questions.

I originally drafted this page five years ago, and I confess that I have not kept up with it.   Please consult the main departmental web page for more up to date information.

Meanwhile, I am still taking graduate students in all the areas noted below.



  • For information addressed to Prospective Students see this page (linked under "Graduate"). You'll notice that this page includes some recent data on our admissions.


  • You do not have to visit Gainesville or have any formal interview in order to be accepted into the graduate program (we rely on your written work, your letters of recommendation, your grades, and your GREs). On the other hand, you might find it useful to be in contact - either in person or by email - to discuss your interests.


A Bit About Me

When you select a graduate program you should certainly think hard about the obvious logistical concerns, such as financial aid, geographic location, size of institution etc. And of course all things being equal your department's national and international reputation will affect your future employment outlook. But much more so than your choice of an undergraduate institution (or the choice of a law school or medical school), your decision about where to pursue graduate study should be based on the individual - or cluster of individuals - who will be most responsible for training you. Your advisors need not have written about precisely what you wish to study, but they should share your general interests and they should also have established professional track records.

It is a good idea to do your own research about the people with whom you might study. See if they have web pages listing their publications and interests. Look them up in a few electronic archives, such as JSTOR or ProjectMuse.

My own web page gives you some sense of my current teaching interests and recent publications. I began my career working on colonial America, but for the last two decades I have studied the mid-19th Century. My first two books were on the northern home front during the Civil War. Then I turned to a comparative study of Liverpool and Philadelphia during the Irish famine. My most recent book is a biographical study of Anna Dickinson, a celebrated 19th Century public woman. Most of my teaching has been in Civil War History, American Women's History, and Nineteenth Century Social and Urban History.


Clusters of U.F. Faculty

The History Department at the University of Florida is quite large representing a wide array of interests and specialties. The U.S. section alone boasts nearly 20 members. If you scan down the Faculty Directory on the department web page you will notice that our scholarly interests overlap in all sorts of ways. Several of these clusters might be special interest to prospective students who might wish to work with me. The following is no more than a selection of possible topics.

Nineteenth-Century America

The Richard J. Milbauer Chair in Southern History. Dr. Link's many books include Roots of Secession: Slavery and Politics in Antebellum Virginia  and  Righteous Warrior: Jesse Helms and the Rise of Modern Conservatism (2008). 


Dr. Adams is an historian of 19th Century America, with an emphasis on political economy and industrialization.   He is the author of  Old Dominion, Industrial Commonwealth: Coal, Politics, and Economy in Antebellum America (JHU, 2004).

Dr. Dale is a specialist in U.S. Legal History.  Her books includeThe Rule of Justice: The People of Chicago versus Zephyr Davis (2001) and Debating – and Creating – Authority: The Failure of a Constitutional Ideal, Massachusetts Bay, 1629-1649 (2001).


Women's History / Gender History

The History Department has a particular strength in Women and Gender. Graduate students can elect to complete a field in Gender History as part of their degree program.

Dr. Kwolek-Folland is the author of Engendering Business: Men and Women in the Corporate Office, 1870-1930.

      Louise Newman:
Dr. Newman is author of White Women's Rights: The Racial Origins of Feminism in the United States.

  • Juliana Barr: 
    Dr. Barr is the author of Peace Came in the Form of a Woman: The Power Relations of Spanish and Indian Nations in the Early Southwestern Borderlands

The author of Politics and Theater: the Crisis of Legitimacy in Restoration France, Dr. Kroen plays a major role in training students with a field in Gender history.


The American South

Although most of my own scholarship has concentrated on the northern United States, I will gladly direct research on the 19th Century South. The Department has a long tradition in Southern history. In addition to Dr. Link, who is a leading figure in the field, and Dr. Dale,whose current project is on Southern Legal Culture, the department has several other southern specialists with strong national reputations.

Dr. Davis works on Florida and Environmental history. He is the author of Race against Time: Culture and Separation in Natchez since 1930.  Dr. Davis has also written extensively in southern women's history.   His his also the author of the forthcoming, An Everglades Providence: Marjory Stoneman Douglas and the American Environmental Century.


      Paul Ortiz:


Dr. Ortiz is the Director of the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program.    His books include Emancipation Betrayed: The Hidden History of Black Organizing and White Violence in Florida from Reconstruction to the Bloody Election of 1920.

Dr. Sensbach is the author of A Separate Canaan: The Making of an Afro-Moravian World in North Carolina, 1763-1840  (1998) and Rebecca's Revival: Making Black Christianity in the Atlantic World (2005)