Civil War Historian Allen Guelzo Joins the Humanities Council as Senior Research Scholar

October 15, 2019
Allen Guelzo, Senior Research Scholar in the Humanities Council and Director of Initiatives on Politics and Statesmanship in the James Madison Program at Princeton. Photo: Sameer Khan

The Humanities Council is pleased to announce the appointment of Allen Guelzo as a Senior Research Scholar beginning in academic year 2019-20. He will teach in the Council’s Program in Humanistic Studies and also hold the position of Director of Initiatives on Politics and Statesmanship in the James Madison Program at Princeton.

Speaking of the new appointment, Council Chair Eric Gregory said, “Allen Guelzo is a leading historian of the United States, known especially for his award-winning work on the Civil War era, Reconstruction, and the life and legacy of Abraham Lincoln. In addition, what makes him particularly attractive for this appointment, is a scholarly range and active research program that includes American intellectual history, philosophy, religious thought, jurisprudence, and broader streams in the humanities. A prominent advocate of the humanities, he is an acclaimed teacher and has served on the National Council of the Humanities. His presence will help the Council build deeper connections across various units on campus and the general public.”

On Saturday, November 2, as part of Princeton University’s Being Human Festival 2019, Guelzo will lead an exploration of the University’s connections to the Civil War. The “Princeton’s Civil War” guided tour will visit three sites: The Memorial Atrium in Nassau Hall; Clio Hall, which honored Jefferson Davis as well as Lincoln’s diplomatic representative to France; and the Special Collections Room in Firestone Library, which houses artifacts like the David Claypoole Johnston anti-Confederate lithograph series. Topics will include Princeton University’s place in the politics of Civil War America, the institution’s favorable connections to the slaveholding South and the Confederacy, incidents among students that finally established a Union identity for the school, the unusual history of the creation of the Memorial Atrium, and stories about individuals from Princeton University on and off the battlefield.

In Spring 2020, Guelzo will teach an interdisciplinary course entitled “American Intellectual History,” offered in Humanistic Studies and cross-listed with the Program in American Studies.

Allen Guelzo’s prolific writings have been recognized as among the most important contributions to scholarly and public understanding of 19th century America. His book Abraham Lincoln: Redeemer President received the 2000 Lincoln Prize and the 2000 Book Prize of the Abraham Lincoln Institute of the Mid-Atlantic. His Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation: The End of Slavery in America Emancipation and his Gettysburg: The Last Invasion also received the Lincoln Prize in 2005 and 2014, respectively. Guelzo is also a foremost authority on the life and thought of Jonathan Edwards.

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