The purpose of this Website essentially distills to one primary objective: to engage an informed public and produce a body of material worthy of publication. My main areas of expertise are the American Civil War Era, Reconstruction, and the Era of Reconciliation. But I do not limit myself to these subjects. You will find numerous posts here exploring any number of topics pertaining to United States history.
This blog is a mission of public history – a collaborative project that seeks to understand the American experience at particular moments in time. Furthermore, I propose that this project be free from scholarly jargon. I care not for turning nouns into verbs and I have no need to distance myself from the public by making things unnecessarily dense.
These days I am working on a short book on the making of D.W. Griffith’s silent film, The Birth of a Nation. We are all well aware of the controversy stirred at the film’s 1915 debut. We are likewise aware of the cultural legacy of the film. I am concerned with the making of this epic historical fiction – Griffith’s research, his casting decisions, his historical background.
I have stated publicly for many years that the blog format works beautifully for those who wish to bridge the gap between academics and the public. I have undertaken this project specifically with this notion in mind. Your contributions, naturally, are welcome.