Program in African American History Past Fellows

Recent resident fellows have conducted research on topics including the Haitian Revolution; African American Performers and the Development of Global Mass Culture; Antebellum African American Nationalism; the Boston Antislavery Fair, 1834-1858; and the development and evolution of abolitionist discourse. Past fellows include the nation’s most prominent scholars of African American literature, history, and the social life of the period before 1900, and their work in the collections of the Library Company has produced scores of acclaimed books and articles.

Mellon Scholars Fellows

2016-2017

Postdoctoral

Dr. Vanessa Holden, Department of History, Michigan State University, Forming Intimacies: Queer Kinship and Resistance in the Antebellum American Atlantic.

Dr. Rashauna Johnson, Department of History, Dartmouth College, “A Looking Glass for the World”: Slavery, Immigration, and Overlapping Diasporas in the U.S. South.

Dissertation

Crystal Webster, Ph.D. Candidate in Afro-American Studies, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Fugitive Play, Discursive Resistance: The Politics of Black Childhood in Nineteenth-Century America.

Nakia Parker, Ph.D. Candidate in History, University of Texas, Austin, Trails of Tears and Freedom: Slavery, Migration, and Emancipation in the Southwest Borderlands, 1830-1887.

Short-Term

Dr. Tara Bynum, Department of English, Rutgers University, Reading Pleasures.

Dr. James Ford, Department of English, Occidental College, Disheveling the Origins: Impossible Canonicity and African Diasporic Writing.

Damon Turner, Ph.D. Candidate in History, Morgan State University, The Reinventing of an Abolitionist: The Transatlantic Study of the United States, Sierra Leone, England, and the Quest for an Omaginary Homeland in Africa through the Eyes of Paul Cuffe, 1776-1817.

2015-2016

Postdoctoral

Dr. Jessica Marie Johnson, Department of History, Michigan State University, Practicing Freedom: Intimacy, Kinship, and Property in Atlantic New Orleans, 1685-1810.

Dissertation

Michael Dickinson, Ph.D. Candidate in History, University of Delaware, Surviving Slavery: Oppression and Social Rebirth in the Urban British Atlantic, 1680-1807.

Short-Term

Julia Bernier, Ph.D. Candidate in Afro-American Studies, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, A Papered Freedom: Self-Purchase and Compensated Manumission in the Antebellum United States.

Dr. Daina Ramey Berry, Department of African and African American Studies, University of Texas, Austin, Ghost Values of the Domestic Cadaver Slave Trade.

Dexter Gabriel, Ph.D. Candidate in History, State University of New York, Stony Brook, A West Indian Jubilee in America.

Holly Pinheiro, Ph.D. Candidate in History, University of Iowa, Men of Color to Arms!: Race, Manhood, and Citizenship during the Civil War Era.

2014-2015

Postdoctoral

Dr. Kabria Baumgartner, Department of History, College of Wooster, In Pursuit of Knowledge: African American Women and Educational Activism in America’s Republic

Dr. Aston Gonzalez, Department of History, University of Michigan, Designing Humanity: African American Activist Art, 1830-1880

Dissertation

Emahunn Campbell, Ph.D. Candidate in Afro-American Studies, University of Massachusetts-Amherst, The Imagination and Construction of the Black Criminal in American Literature, 1741-1910

Emily Owens, Ph.D. Candidate in African and African American Studies, Harvard University, Fantasies of Consent: Black Women’s Sexual Labor in 19th c. New Orleans

Short-term

Westenley Alcenat, Ph.D. Candidate in History, Columbia University, Escape to Zion: Black Emigration and the Elusive Quest for Citizenship, 1816-1868

Dr. Frederick Knight, Department of History, Morehouse College, Black Elders in Early America

Tiffany Player, Ph.D. Candidate in History, Washington University in St. Louis, Black Women and the Politics of Slavery from the Antebellum through the Great Depression

Dr. Selena Sanderfer, Department of History, Western Kentucky University, Tennessee’s Postwar Black Emigration Movements, 1868-1888

Albert M. Greenfield Foundation Fellows in African American History

2013-2014

Dr. Anna Lawrence, Department of History, Fairfield University; Jarena Lee’s Calling.

Mary Maillard, Independent Scholar, Vancouver, B.C.; Lulu and Genie: The Letters of Louisa Jacobs to Eugenie Webb, 1879-1911.

Marie Stango, Ph.D. Candidate in History, University of Michigan; Antislavery and Colonization: African American Women in Nineteenth Century West Africa.

Katie Johnston, Ph.D. Candidate in History, Columbia University; The Experience of Hot Climates: Health, Race and the Body in the British Atlantic World.

2012-2013

Marcus A. Allen, Ph.D. Candidate in History, Morgan State University; Institutionalizing Black Capitalism: An Examination of the African American Depositors at the Savings Bank of Baltimore, 1850-1900.

Christopher Bonner, Ph.D. Candidate in History, Yale University; Making Citizenship Meaningful: Language, Power, and Belonging in African American Activism, 1827-1868.

Abigail Cooper, Ph.D. Candidate in History, University of Pennsylvania; “Until I reach My Home”: Inside the Refugee Camps of the American Civil War.

Dr. Brooke N. Newman, Department of History, Virginia Commonwealth University; Island Masters: Gender, Race, and Power in the Eighteenth-Century British Caribbean.

2011-2012

Dr. David Crosby, Independent Scholar, Jackson, Mississippi; An Annotated Critical Edition of Anthony Benezet’s Antislavery Writings

Aston Gonzales, Ph.D. Candidate in History, University of Michigan; Black Activist Art in Philadelphia, 1820-1860

Lori Leavell, Ph.D. Candidate in English, Emory University; Imagining a Future South: David Walker’s Appeal and Antebellum American Literature

Anna Stewart, Ph.D. Candidate in English, University of Texas at Austin; Lives Reconstructed: Slave Narratives and Freedmen’s Education

2010-2011

Dr. Ric N. Caric, Department of Government and Regional Analysis, Morehead State University; Occupied by Blackness: Early Blackface Minstrelsy in Philadelphia

Dr. James W. Cook, Department of History, University of Michigan; The Lost Black Generation: African American Performers and the Making of Global Mass Culture

Dr. Peter Reed, Department of English, University of Mississippi; Dancing on the Volcano: The Haitian Revolution and American Performance Cultures, 1790-1865

Dr. Terri Snyder, American Studies, California State University, Fullerton; Suicide, Slavery and the Rise of Abolitionism in North America

2009-2010

Ronald Johnson, Ph.D. Candidate in History, Purdue University; In Close Alliance; How the Early American Republic and Revolutionary Saint-Domingue Made Their Way in a Hostile Atlantic World

Dr. Alice Taylor, Department of History, University of Western Ontario; Selling Abolitionism: The Commercial, Material and Social World of the Boston Antislavery Fair, 1834-1858

Dr. Beverly Tomek, Department of History, Wharton County Junior College; Pennsylvania Hall: The Lynching of a Building

Andrew Diemer, Ph.D. Candidate in History, Temple University; Black Nativism: African American Politics and Nationalism in Antebellum Baltimore and Philadelphia, 1817-1863

2008-2009

Corey Brooks, Ph.D. Candidate in History, University of California, Berkeley; Building an Antislavery House: Political Abolitionists and Congress, 1835-1861

Dr. Martyn J. Powell, Department of History, University of Wales Aberystwyth; The White Slave Trade: Print Culture and Irish Emigration to American in the Late 18th Century

Derrick R. Spires, Ph.D. Candidate in English, Vanderbilt University; Reimagining a “Beautiful but Baneful Object”: Black Writers’ Theories of Citizenship and Nation in the Antebellum United States

Kaye Wise Whitehead, Ph.D. Candidate in Language, Literacy, and Culture, University of Maryland, Baltimore County; Washing Her Bowl: Using Diary Entries to Reconstruct the Life of a 19th-Century Free Black Woman