I joined American Studies from Sheffield University in September 2006. I received my first degree in American Studies from Hull University, spending a year at North Carolina State University in Raleigh. After that, I took an MA at the Institute of United States Studies, studying with the great British historian of American slavery and the Civil War, Peter J. Parish, before completing doctoral work at Hull. I was secretary of BrANCH (British American Nineteenth Century Historians), 2002-2004, was on the executive committee for a decade, and organised two overseas conferences in Edgefield, South Carolina and Houston, Texas. I was book reviews editor for the Routledge journal American Nineteenth Century History from 2005-2016. I served on the British Association for American Studies executive committee, 2016-17. I have also served on the Southern Historical Association's Membership Committee, Program Committee, and was Chair of the Green-Ramsdell Award Committee.
I have supervised/am supervising, a variety of PhD dissertations, including: black preachers in the antebellum South; upcountry South Carolina during the American Civil War; race and labour in New Orleans in the early 19th century; Ebony magazine and African American history; the American South and the Vietnam War; St Louis in the early 20th century; Ellis Island graffiti; and homelessness in the 1980s. I welcome enquiries from postgraduate students interested in undertaking research on American slavery, the history of race and race relations in North America, whiteness, the American South, the US Civil War (especially Anglo-American relations and transnational angles), or any aspect of the history of the nineteenth-century United States. The John Rylands Library has excellent collections in these areas, including substantial primary sources on slavery and antislavery.