Ph.D., 2010, University of Virginia
I am an environmental and military historian of the American Civil War. My research and teaching interests involve the evolution of America’s armed forces from the 1600s through the late nineteenth century, with a particular focus on the interactions of soldiers with their “natural” environments and soldiers’ mental and physical health. To this end, my first book, Nature’s Civil War: Common Soldiers and the Environment in 1862 Virginia, winner of the 2014 Wiley-Silver Prize for best first book on the Civil War, explores how enlisted soldiers adapted to the mental and physical challenges of their wartime environments by adopting self-care techniques, from eradicating mosquitoes to boiling water, and informal networks of health care, including African Americans, women, and, of course, each other. I am currently working on a biography of Confederate general Jubal A. Early and his problematic influence on the modern historical profession and its methods.
Previously, I was assistant professor of history at the University of Scranton, Pennsylvania, and before that a schoolteacher in the Bay Area of California.