I am Assistant Professor of History at York College of Pennsylvania, where I teach courses in Early American, Women’s and Gender, and Public History. In the past, I have taught at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette as a Visiting Assistant Professor, and at George Mason University as an Adjunct Instructor and Graduate Teaching Assistant.
My book, In Dependence: Women and the Patriarchal State in Revolutionary America, will be published with New York University Press in the spring of 2023. In Dependence explores the ways in which women in Boston, Philadelphia, and Charleston manipulated their legal, social, and economic positions of dependence and turned these constraints into vehicles of female empowerment. Although the law and social custom established restrictions on women’s rights and behavior, early American women were not completely powerless in their dependent state. By using legislative petitions, divorce cases, marriage settlements, equity cases, probate records, manumission deeds, freedom suits, almshouse records, and charitable institutional files, In Dependence demonstrates that women defined their relationship with the patriarchal state—the colonial, revolutionary, and early national governments and organizations helmed by elite men—in terms of their multifaceted dependencies. I argue that many women in this period were able to achieve a more empowered role not in spite of their dependent status but because of it. They thus exposed the paradoxes of their legal and social subordination by using the very terms of their dependence to undermine the system that was meant to keep them in submission. My dissertation, on which this project is based, was a finalist for the 2017 SHEAR Manuscript Prize.
My other publications include “Privileged in the Patriarchy: How Charleston Wives Negotiated Financial Freedom in the Early Republic” (South Carolina Historical Magazine, July 2018) and “Complicated Allegiances: Women, Politics, and Property in Post-Occupation Charleston,” in Holly Mayer, ed., Women Waging War in the American Revolution (UVA Press, 2022).
My publicly-engaged work includes writing with the Washington Post’s Made By History; filming with C-SPAN’s Lectures in History Program, “Women’s Political Power in Early America” (September 2022); public talks with York College of Pennsylvania; the York, PA chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution; TAFEPa; and various contributions to the Revolutionary Spaces organization, including its “Tea Party Tonight!” program and consultation on its 2023 exhibit, “The Humble Petitioner: Fighting for Rights in 18th Century America.”
I received my PhD in Early American and Women’s and Gender History from the Department of History and Art History at George Mason University in December 2016. I earned my MA in United States History and Women’s and Gender History from Villanova University in 2012, and my BA in History from Boston College in 2010.