- Assistant Professor, Departments of History and American Studies
- Research Associate, Glenn A. Black Laboratory of Archaeology
- Research Associate, American Indian Studies Research Institute
- A.B. at University of Georgia (2001)
- Ph.D. at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (2007)
|Ballantine Hall, Rm. 828|
Focusing largely on Native peoples of the Southeast, my research explores race, class, Indigenous sovereignty, and the intersection of U.S. and Native American history. In my first book, Slavery in Indian Country: The Changing Face of Captivity in Early America, I traced the dynamic nature of captivity from roughly A.D. 1000, when Native chiefdoms competed for regional power, through the conclusion of the Second Seminole War in 1842. Captivity was a fluid practice, which Southern Indians repeatedly reinvented to deal with a succession of challenges, including chiefly competition during the pre-Columbia era, post contact demographic disaster, and incorporation into the transatlantic economic in the colonial era. Not until the late eighteenth century did captivity transition from a kin-based to a race-based practice, a shift that had profound consequences for all inhabitants of the American South. In addition to enhancing the visibility of Native people in the broader narratives of both early American and Southern history, this project addresses cross-cultural constructions of race and racism as well as the diversity of slavery in North America.
Currently, I'm at work on a book-length on Choctaw Academy, the first national Indian school in the United States. The Academy, which endured from 1825 to 1848, was operated by Richard Mentor Johnson (vice president under Van Buren) and Johnson's multiracial family. Although initiated by the Choctaw Nation, the Academy became home to a diverse range of Native peoples from the Southeast and Midwest, including Creeks, Cherokees, Chickasaws, Seminoles, Potawatomis, Miamis, and Osages. Choctaw Academy’s lifespan corresponds to the American imperial turn, when the United States transitioned from an east-coast nation to a continental empire. This book, tentatively titled Warriors of the Pen, explores how Native students and their families reimagined Indigenous nationhood and the future of North America during this pivotal historical period.
- Kate B. & Hall. J. Peterson Fellowship, American Antiquarian Society, 2012-2013.
- Outstanding Junior Faculty Award, Indiana University, 2012.
- American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) Fellowship, 2011-2012.
- Trustees' Teaching Award, IU, 2011-2012.
- Barra/Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow, McNeil Center for Early American Studies, 2007-09.
- Phillips Fellow, American Philosophical Society, 2006.
- Native American
- Early American
- American South
- Slavery and Race
Courses Recently Taught
- AMST A275: Natives and Newcomers in Early America
- HIST A207: Introduction to Native American History
- HIST J300: Natives and Newcomers in Early America
- HIST A300: Native American Women
- AMST G605: Introduction to Native American and Indigenous Studies
Slavery in Indian Country: The Changing Face of Captivity in Early America (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2010).
*Winner, John C. Ewers Prize, Western History Association
*Winner, Berkshire Conference of Women Historians Book Prize
*Winner, James Broussard Prize, Society for Historians of the Early American Republic
*Honorable Mention, Frederick Jackson Turner Prize, Organization of American Historians
*Finalist, Frederick Douglass Prize, Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Abolition
"Race and Indian Removal: Perspectives from Choctaw Academy, " in Oxford Handbook on the History of Race, ed. Matthew Guterl (New York: Oxford University Press, forthcoming).
"The Lady of Cofitachequi: Gender and Political Power among Native Southerners." In South Carolina Women: Their Lives and Times, eds. Joan Johnson, Valinda Littlefield, and Marjorie Spruill. University of Georgia Press, 2009.
"Conquered Enemies, Adopted Kin, and Owned People: The Creek Indians and their Captives, " Journal of Southern History 73 (2007), 255-288.