some of the incredible students at the department of history


Passionate faculty. Incredible students. 

These are essential ingredients to the best history departments — like ours.

Our faculty members know their way around the world — from the Americas and Europe to Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. They’re also authorities on the issues — from the Renaissance and Reagan, slavery and samurais, women and war, and much more.  Faculty are world-renowned experts in their fields and passionate educators in the classroom.

Our students, inside the classroom and beyond it, are captivated by the events and cultures — from Russia and the Reformation to Native Americans and nationalism — that have shaped our world.  They have gone on to become educators and lawyers, CEOs and community organizers, diplomats and peacemakers.

Away from the classroom, internships and our history club bring lessons to life — as does our annual Maymester course, which has taken students to Germany, Poland, Hungary, England, Ireland, and Japan in the past three years.

Whether you want to see the world from your classroom seat or travel it by the seat of your pants, we want you to take the journey with us. Take a look at some “Fast Facts” about our department to learn more!

What’s New?

Happy New Year, and we look forward to an amazing semester this spring!

Many thanks to Dr. Lorri Glover, Professor of History at St. Louis University, for sharing her incredible work on Eliza Lucas Pinckney as part of our Providence College Seminar on the History of Early America (or PC-SHEA, for short).  Although we will be on hiatus for the winter break, we will be back in action in the spring with some excellent papers to discuss, ranging from alchemy, to inter-imperial relations, to the elusive Roger Williams.  More details to follow, and we hope you will join us!  As always, PC-SHEA is generously supported by the School of Arts and Sciences, as well as the Latin American Studies Program and the Gladys Brooks Foundation.

Thanks to Drs. Margaret Manchester, Steve Smith, and Edward E. Andrews for offering fascinating faculty talks as part of our “Making  History” series this fall.   Next spring it is the students’ turn, as they will showcase their best work as part of our annual Making History Conference.  The Cornelius P. Forster, O.P. Making History Series is generously supported by the Gladys Brooks Foundation.

Our very own faculty members were featured three times in the latest issue of Providence College MagazineDr. Adrian Weimer was highlighted in a section on faculty research grants, Dr. Sharon Murphy in a section on “Scholar Power,” and Dr. Edward E. Andrews offered his perspective in “The Last Word.”  Check it out!

The Department of History and Classics is extremely grateful to Dr. Stephen Jackson, whose recent donation helped to create an endowed scholarship in Dr. Donna McCaffrey’s name.  The scholarship will support students in the fields of History, Psychology, and Theology, and it will keep the memory of Dr. McCaffrey, a true titan of our department, alive.

Recent Faculty Accomplishments

Sharon Murphy on TLCDr. Sharon Murphy is becoming a bit of a  celebrity. An excerpt from her recent book, Other People’s Money: How Banking Worked in the Early American Republic (Johns Hopkins, 2017) was featured on Time Magazine’s website. Murphy was also featured in an interview on “Backstory,” which discussed the history of American insurance and gambling (she comes in at the 28 minute mark). She also appeared on TLC’s popular show, “Who Do You Think You Are?”! Finally, Murphy was awarded a Summer Stipend from The National Endowment for the Humanities to continue her work on banking and slavery. The NEH is highly selective, with an acceptance rate of about 7%, and hers was the only NEH Summer Stipend granted among all institutions in Rhode Island this year.

Congrats to Dr. Colin Jaundrill!  Jaundrill’s Samurai to Soldier: Remaking Military Service in Nineteenth-Century Japan was selected as one of the “Best Books of 2017” by Foreign Affairs.  Well done!

Our very own Dr. Toby Harper has recently published a great piece on the Honors, sorry, Honours System in the British Empire.  It’s called “The Order of the British Empire After the British Empire,” and it’s featured in the most recent edition of The Journal of Canadian History.  He wrote a nifty little blog piece about it for the University of Toronto Press.  Check it out!

Dr. Robin Greene has also been extraordinarily busy.  Her article, “Recollecting Histories: Herodotus and Thucydides in Callimachus’ Aetia,” is coming out this fall in Phoenix, and she also has “Callimachus’ Taxonomy of Men” coming out next year in Mnemosyne, both of which are international classics journals.  But perhaps most importantly, her new translation and commentary on Paradoxographus Florentinus will be coming out next year with Brill, a top international press.  Way to go, Dr. Greene!

Dr. Jeffrey Johnson recently published his new book, The 1916 Preparedness Day Bombing: Anarchists and Terrorism in Progressive Era Americawith Routledge.  This comes on the heels of a collection edited for ABC-CLIO called Reforming America: A Thematic Encyclopedia and Document Collection of the Progressive Era.  Johnson was also featured in Time Magazine, in an article on the 1916 San Francisco Bombing, and he recently had his lecture on the bombing featured on C-SPAN itself.

Dr. Connie Rousseau’s article, “Harbingers of the Future: Marriage Cases during the Pontificate of Innocent III and Lateran IV,” was recently published by one of the oldest journals of law and legal history in the world, Zeitschrift der Savigny-Stiftung fur Rechtsgeschichte, Kanonische Abteilung.  Congrats on this major accomplishment!

Our department chair and fearless leader, Dr. Raymond Sickinger, has published a fascinating biography of Antoine Frédéric Ozanam, a famous French thinker, writer, and the primary founder of the Society of St. Vincent DePaul.  Sickinger’s Antoine Frédéric Ozanam is available from The University of Notre Dame Press.  The book received a great write-up in Rhode Island Catholic.  

Big congratulations to Dr. Steve Smith, who published his first book: An Empire of Print: The New York Publishing Trade in the Early American Republic, via the Penn State Series in the History of the Book. Great work, professor!

Congratulations to Dr. Adrian Weimer.  Weimer is currently on two long-term research fellowships to support her project, Godly Petitions: Puritanism and the Crisis of the Restoration in America. The fellowships are sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities in cooperation with the Massachusetts Historical Society and the American Antiquarian Society.