Showing posts with label article. Show all posts
Showing posts with label article. Show all posts

Thursday, October 26, 2023

Circus at the Seaside: Building the Great Yarmouth Hippodrome, 1903 - Coastal Studies & Society

Over the last few months, with my colleague Malcolm McLaughlin, I've started a new research project on the history of the Great Yarmouth Hippodrome and circus at the seaside. Our first article, "Circus at the Seaside: Building the Great Yarmouth Hippodrome, 1903", has just been published open access in Coastal Studies & Society. Available here. Abstract below...

Thursday, July 27, 2023

A Christmas Carol In Nineteenth-Century America, 1844-1870 - Comparative American Studies

Sol Eytinge's illustration of the three spirits visiting Scrooge in Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol, taken from the 1868 Ticknor and Fields American edition.

Excited to say that my article on the tumultuous Transatlantic reception of Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol, 1844-1870, has just been published open access in Comparative American Studies. You can read it for free here. Abstract below...

Friday, January 06, 2023

Nineteenth-Century Literature: Enchantments of Waverley

Many years in the making, my article on Walter Scott and the reading lives of nineteenth-century American children is out now in Nineteenth-Century Literature. Abstract below...

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Comparative American Studies: Following the River

I've guest edited a Special Issue of Comparative American Studies dedicated to rivers! Available here for those with institutional subscriptions. Some great work by some brilliant young scholars. Also includes my own essay on Joseph and Elizabeth Robins Pennell's account of a summer on the Thames. That's available here.  

Monday, August 26, 2019

History Today: Life on the Mississippi

I have a long article on the Mississippi in the September issue of History Today (Vol. 69, Issue 9). It was great to use some of the research for Deep Water in this way, and their production values are a delight, as you can see below! At least for now, it's available here


Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Readex Report: Ralph Keeler

In my continuing effort to keep the memory of Ralph Keeler alive, I've just published a short account of his career and disappearance in the Readex Report (Vol 12, Issue 1): "The Lost Prince of American Bohemians: The Strange Life and Mysterious Death of Ralph Keeler, Literary Vagabond." You can check it out here.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Missing Ralph Keeler: Comparative American Studies

Many moons ago I came across a couple of oblique references to Ralph Keeler while researching travel accounts of the Mississippi River in the wake of the Civil War. He quickly proved to be too intriguing to ignore. After a paper at BAAS 2012 and a lot of digging around, I managed to piece together an account of his career and, in particular, his very significant literary friendships with writers like Mark Twain, William Dean Howells, and Thomas Bailey Aldrich that has a lot to tell us about the literary world in the decade after the war. "Missing Ralph Keeler: Bohemians, Brahmins and Literary Friendships in the Gilded Age" has just been published in Comparative American Studies, 14:2 (2016), 1-23. It's available here, for those with access. And for a limited time, even those without a subscription should be able to read it here. I hope this lays his ghost to rest!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Open Rivers: Knowing the Mississippi

It was great to be asked to contribute something to Open Rivers, a fantastic new interdisciplinary journal "that recognizes rivers in general, and the Mississippi River in particular, as space for timely and critical conversations about the intersections between biophysical systems and human systems." Along with a number of other people to have written about the river, I was asked to respond to two questions: "How did you come to know the Mississippi River?  What does it mean, to you, to know the Mississippi River?" You can find my answer here, and below:

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Mark Twain Journal

Solomon Eytinge, illustration for John Hay's "Jim Bludso" (1871)
I've got an article coming out in the next issue of the Mark Twain Journal (Fall 2015): “‘The Mississippi was a virgin field’: Reconstructing the River Before Mark Twain, 1865-1875.” This one was a long time coming! As you can see here, I've been working on this since at least 2009. Gosh, I think it might be even longer. Anyway, I'm delighted that it's coming out in the Mark Twain Journal, and I'm equally delighted with how many illustrations they've allowed me to include. It should look pretty lovely, at least. This is my attempt to build a picture of the cultural life of the Mississippi in the decade before Mark Twain properly claimed the river as a subject. It's still amazing to me how rich this subject is - I look at steamboat races, bridge building, art, literature, travel writing, and plenty of other things too. More information here on the journal's website. I'll update this post when it's available online. Enjoy.

UPDATE: for those who have access, it's now available here.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Southern Quarterly: Roustabouts, Steamboats, and the Old Way to Dixie: The Mississippi River and the Southern Imaginary in the Early Twentieth Century

I was thrilled to be invited to contribute something to the latest edition of the The Southern Quarterly, a special issue on the Mississippi that also features river luminaries like Christopher Morris, Michael Allen and Barbara Eckstein. All told, it's a brilliant slab of river writing that does a lot to cement the development of a field of study around the Mississippi - something that's been bubbling for the last few years. My article's titled "Roustabouts, Steamboats, and the Old Way to Dixie: The Mississippi River and the Southern Imaginary in the Early Twentieth Century." I take a look at a neglected body of river writings that blossomed between the publication of Mark Twain's Pudd'nhead Wilson (1894), his last major statement on the river, and Edna Ferber's Show Boat (1926), which redefined the river for decades to come. I focus on late-career works by Southern writers like George Washington Cable, Ruth McEnery Stuart and Mary Noailles Murfree, explore a variety of travel accounts, and end up in Tin Pan Alley. For those who have access, you can browse the entire issue here through Project Muse. Alternatively, I've uploaded my article here - enjoy.

Monday, September 23, 2013

The Readex Report: “A Family Newspaper”: Pearl Rivers and the Rebirth of the New Orleans Daily Picayune

My article on Pearl Rivers - poet, journalist, first female editor of an American daily newspaper - and her relationship with the New Orleans Times-Picayune has just been published in the Readex Report. The whole thing's available here. Make the acquaintance not just of Pearl Rivers herself, but a whole crew of pioneering newspaper women including Dorothy Dix and Catherine Cole. And don't forget The Weather Frog...

Monday, January 14, 2013

BBC History Magazine Travel Special: New Orleans

BBC History Magazine kindly asked me to contribute to the history travel supplement that comes with this month's issue (January 2013). I was very happy to oblige - and, unsurprisingly, picked New Orleans as my historical destination of choice. A few scans below:

Sunday, November 06, 2011

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

History Today: The Big Uneasy

History Today, August 2011
My article on New Orleans and its historic relationship with disasters of one kind and another is up now on the History Today website, and out in print next week. It was a pleasure to write, and they've done a lovely job with the illustrations. I think it pinpoints a lot of things in miniature that I touch on in depth in Southern Queen. So enjoy! Below, further information about some of the figures that I mention, and links to some of the sources that I used.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

BBC History Magazine: New Orleans in 1858

My travel guide to New Orleans in 1858 is out today in this month's BBC History Magazine (June 2011). This was a fun piece to write, not least because it threw up some interesting research questions. Much of the material I had to hand because of Southern Queen, but it also caused me to have to think about some peculiar specifics.

Friday, November 06, 2009

European Journal of American Culture - 'Dead Men Tell No Tales': Outlaw John A. Murrell on the Antebellum Stage

Charles Burke
My article, "'Dead Men Tell No Tales': outlaw John A. Murrell on the antebellum stage" has been published in the European Journal of American Culture. For those who are interested, the Harvard Theatre Collection catalogue reference for the manuscript written by Nathaniel Harrington Bannister that inspired this article can be found here. This is the abstract:
Outlaw John A. Murrell, credited with the planning of a failed slave uprising in Mississippi in 1835, was a significant figure in antebellum popular culture. Previously unrecognized, however, is his use as a character on the antebellum stage. Proof of his employment in this role can be found in the Harvard Theatre Collection, home to a hitherto unidentified manuscript copy of a melodrama entitled ‘Murrell, the Pirate – A Play in Three Acts’. In this article, its creator is identified as Nathaniel Harrington Bannister, a significant pre-war actor-playwright. An exploration of its performance history reveals its significance in a variety of ways. It highlights the degree to which John Murrell was an adaptable and ambiguous antebellum villain. It helps to illuminate the life and career of Bannister and his contribution to the American stage. It provides new insights into the life and career of Charles Burke, another significant actor-playwright of the antebellum years who developed an important connection to ‘Murrell, the Pirate’. And because of Burke's association with the play, it also becomes plausible to place it as an important step on the road in the development of Joseph Jefferson III's production of ‘Rip Van Winkle’, one of the most successful and influential nineteenth century American plays.
And the full article is available here. In the forthcoming months I intend to make all of my articles and chapters available in this way.
Amelia Green(e), widow of both John Augustus Stone and Nathaniel Harrington Bannister

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Material Culture

My review essay, "Before the Deluge: Reading, Writing and Rebuilding New Orleans", has been published in the Fall 2009 edition of Material Culture: The Journal of the Pioneer American Society. You can take a look at the contents page here. And here's the abstract:

Before the Deluge: Reading, Writing and Rebuilding New Orleans — A special comparative review of several books focusing on the city of New Orleans

By Thomas Ruys Smith, School of American Studies, University of East Anglia, UK

This review essay examines four recent books concerned with the history of New Orleans. Though their approaches and focuses vary – from nineteenth century memoir to historical geography to tourism studies – all four volumes offer a variety of insights into the development of the city. In particular, they offer readings of the city’s evolution that help to interpret the devastations of Hurricane Katrina in August 2005 and give a timely sense of perspective to the ongoing attempts to rebuild New Orleans.

Update: full article now available here.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Mississippi Quarterly

My article on the John A. Murrell conspiracy and the Lynching of the Vicksburg gamblers on Independence Day, 1835, has now been officially published in the Mississippi Quarterly (59:1-2 (Winter-Spring 2006), 129-160).

UPDATE: Interestingly enough, this article is now available for download via

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Revue Française d'Études Américaines

Margaret Hall, Frances Trollope, Harriet Martineau

My article, ''The river now began to bear on our imaginations': Margaret Hall, Frances Trollope, Harriet Martineau and the Problem of the Antebellum Mississippi', is available for sale and download here and here. The special issue of the Revue Française d'Études Américaines dedicated to the Mississippi is available from Amazon France.

Update: Full text PDF available for free here.