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Jones to Publish Article in North Carolina Historical Review

Dr. Jonathan Jones, the Richards Center postdoctoral Fellow in Civil War history, will publish an article in the July issue of North Carolina Historical Review. The article, "The Life and Death of Frank Clewell, Confederate Veteran: Microhistory and the Civil War Era-South," examines Clewell's life to illustrate the longterm impact of morphine addiction on Civil War veterans.

Former Postdoctoral Fellows to Speak at Library Company of Philadelphia

Dr. Jessica Johnson and Dr. Sasha Turner will participate in a roundtable talk at the Library Company of Philadelphia on February 17. The talk, "Body and Soul: a Conversation with Jessica Johnson About Slavery, Gender, and the Atlantic World," will take place from 5:30–7:00 p.m. EST. Attendees can register for the talk at the link above.

Johnson was the Richards Center's first postdoctoral Fellow in African American history for the 2012–2013 academic year. Turner succeeded her as Richards Center Fellow for 2013–2014.

Aziz Discusses Origins of Self-Care Industry in Black Power Movement

Aziz Discusses Origins of Self-Care Industry in Black Power Movement

Dr. Maryam Aziz

Maryam Aziz, Richards Center and Africana Research Center postdoctoral Fellow in African American history, recently discussed the origins of the contemporary self-care industry in an interview with Teen Vogue magazine. Dr. Aziz noted that women in the Black Power movement popularized self-care techniques like good nutrition, movement exercises (such as yoga and martial arts), and meditation as important means of self-care during the Civil Rights movement. Their emphasis on preserving physical and mental wellness has profoundly influenced today's multi-billion dollar self-care industry. You can read Aziz's interview here.

Shelden Speaks at Massachusetts Historical Society Virtual Event

Shelden Speaks at Massachusetts Historical Society Virtual Event

Dr. Rachel Shelden

Richards Center director Rachel Shelden participated in a January 9 talk organized by the Massachusetts Historical Society, titled, "'At Noon on the 20th Day of January': Contested Elections in American History." Dr. Shelden joined distinguished political historians Joanne B. Freeman, Yale University; Peter Onuf, University of Virginia; Erik B. Alexander, Southern Illinois University; and Ted Widmer for the talk, which was postponed from January 6 to January 9 in response to the appalling Capitol riot. The roundtable discussed historical threats to the peaceful transfer of presidential power to provide historical context for the troubling refusal of President Trump and many of his supporters' refusal to accept the legitimacy of his defeat in the 2020 elections.

Civil War Era Scholars Respond to January 6, 2021 Events and Aftermath

January 6, 2021 was a historic day in the nation’s history.

Images of armed white men and women storming the Capitol Building carrying Confederate battle flags and other emblems flooded social media and television screens. Resulting in the death of two Capitol police officers, this twenty-first century contestation over Civil War history and memory has stunned the nation and the world. Within twenty-four hours, Civil War and Reconstruction era scholars have cogently and ably responded through a series of op-eds.

While not an exhaustive list, below are some recent publications offering context, teaching resources and clarity for seeking understanding on the events of January 6, 2021.


JCWE editors Kate Masur and Greg Downs “Yes, Wednesday’s Attempted Insurrection is Who We Are,” Washington Post, January 8, 2021.

Megan Kate Nelson, “1871 Provides a Roadmap for Addressing the Pro-Trump Attempted Insurrection,” Washington Post, January 7, 2021.

Keri Leigh Merritt and Rhae Lynn Barnes, “A Confederate Flag at the Capitol Summons America’s Demons,”, January 7, 2021.

Clint Smith, “The Whole Story in a Single Photo,” The Atlantic, January 8, 2021.

Karen L. Cox, “What Trump Shares With the ‘Lost Cause’ of the Confederacy,” New York Times, January 8, 2021.

Jelani Cobb, “Georgia, Trump’s Insurrectionists, and Lost Causes,” The New Yorker, January 8, 2021.

Eric Foner, “The Capitol Riot Reveals the Dangers From the Enemy Within,” The Nation, January 8, 2021.

Kelly Carter Jackson, “The Inaction of Capitol Police Was by Design,” The Atlantic, January 8, 2021.

Rachel Hartigan, “Was the Assault on the Capitol Really ‘Unprecendented’?: Historians Weigh In,” National Geographic, January 8, 2021.

Joshua Rothman, “Mobs of White Citizens Rioting Have Been Commonplace in the United States for Centuries,” The Hechinger Report, January 8, 2021.

David Blight, “How Trumpism May Endure,” New York Times, January 9, 2021.

Melissa DeVelvis and DJ Polite, “The Attempted Insurrection Was Only Part of the Right’s Anti-Democratic Playbook,” Washington Post, January 10, 2021.

Over the next few weeks, Muster will feature posts for understanding and teaching January 6, 2021 and its aftermath. If you are interested in contributing a piece for this Muster series, please consider pitching us an idea.


Post shared from the Journal of the Civil War Era Muster blog.

Shelden Publishes in Washington Post

Shelden Publishes in Washington Post

Richards Center director Dr. Rachel Shelden

Richards Center director Rachel Shelden coauthored an article in the January 6 issue of The Washington Post with fellow historian Erik B. Alexander. The article, "Ted Cruz thinks 2020 is like 1876. He's right, but not for the reason he thinks," considers the historical precedent behind Senator Ted Cruz's call for the appointment of an electoral commission to adjudicate the 2020 election. In a joint statement with other senators, Cruz recalled 1877 when Congress established a bipartisan commission to resolve the status of electoral votes in Florida, Louisiana, and South Carolina after Republicans and Democrats from those states submitted conflicting vote totals. In the 2020 election, however, there are no legitimately disputed electoral college votes, as each state has certified their vote totals. Instead, Shelden and Alexander note that the true similarity between 1876 and 2020 is that the losing party in both elections sought to succeed through voter suppression. Read the op-ed at the link above.