The University of North Carolina Press, in partnership with the George and Ann Richards Civil War Era Center at Penn State, launched The Journal of the Civil War Era in March 2011. Former Richards Center Director founding editor of the journal. In 2016, Blair passed the editorial reins to Judith Giesberg of Villanova University, and in 2020 Kate Masur, Northwestern University, and Gregory Downs, University of California, Davis, succeeded Giesberg as editors.
The journal offers a unique space where scholars across the many subfields that animate nineteenth-century history can enter into conversation with each other. Besides offering fresh perspectives on the military, political, and legal history of the era, the journal covers such disparate subjects as slavery and antislavery, labor and capitalism, popular culture and intellectual history, expansionism and empire, and African American and women’s history. Moreover, The Journal of the Civil War Era is a venue where scholars engaged in studying race, gender, and transnational topics, and the full range of theoretical perspectives that animate historical practice, can find a home.