For Snowy

This weekend, my partner and fiancĂ©e Cassie and I had to make the difficult decision to release our cat, Snowy, from the pain and discomfort she was suffering. We lost a member of our family, but we also helped her escape from a more painful life. Late Friday night, Snowy became distressed and was laboring […]

"This is my nest"

Niagara Burns

Burning Towns and Bursting Cows

a Cow and Calf, which died by reason of the American Troops leaving flour on the plains whereby over eating herself she burst. – Benjamin Holmes, 1823 On the 10th of December, 1813, a cow and her calf were left alone in a snow-covered field while her owner sought refuge with distant neighbours. The town […]

GMU PhD History Tracking Sheet

The following is a spreadsheet I developed to track the requirements for my PhD in History at George Mason University and my completion of the courses. The spreadsheet automatically updates to provide a tally of completed and remaining credits at the bottom. You simple add courses in the slot that they fulfill, and mark when […]

Lessons at a Conference

On November 14 and 15, RRCHNM hosted a conference to commemorate its 20th anniversary. Current faculty, staff, and graduate students were joined by former members of the center and guests from throughout the United States. Over the two days, we enjoyed brief presentations and unconference-style sessions on a variety of topics. Early this year, the […]


On Losing the Past

A common question in digital humanities, particularly digital history, is whether or not to preserve as much as possible, and how to accomplish that preservation. The debate has strong arguments on both sides and applies equally to born-digital and analogue materials. During a recent trip to Harpers Ferry, however, I witnessed a more physical and […]

2014. Note the expansion carved in the left wall of the tunnel.

Difference and Creativity

This morning, I had breakfast with an older friend who spent his long career moving through public and private education systems from Tennessee to California. His own education began in biology, but he spent most of his career in administration, solving problems and developing innovative educational approaches. He worked as a high school teacher and […]

When We Don’t Learn From History

I am a pretty disturbed by the media focus on the Middle East conflict, and unbalanced descriptions of the conflict. More importantly, I am mortified by the recent commitment from Western nations to conduct bombings and warfare in Iraq and Syria. Years ago, similar arguments were made about intervening with Afghanistan and Iraq. Two years […]


Looking Forward in the Rearview

When I applied to the PhD program in history at George Mason University, I did not know about the Digital History Fellowship. I had researched PhD programs that might offer a chance to work in digital history, and identified GMU and the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media as the best option for […]