Thavolia Glymph

John Hope Franklin Visiting Professor of American Legal History


Thavolia Glymph will visit Duke Law in the spring 2018 semester as the John Hope Franklin Visiting Professor of American Legal History, a distinguished professorship she first held in 2015. A professor in the Departments of History and African & African American Studies at Duke University, Glymph focuses her teaching and scholarship on 19th century U.S. history. At Duke Law, she will teach a seminar titled Slavery and the Law.

Glymph’s research agenda focuses on the U.S. South with an emphasis on slavery and emancipation, the Civil War, labor and economic history, and gender and women’s history. Her current focus is on the gender and the laws of war and surveillance.

Among many other works, Glymph is the author of Out of the House of Bondage: The Transformation of the Plantation Household (Cambridge, 2008), for which she shared the 2009 Philip Taft Labor History Award, and was a finalist for both the 2009 Frederick Douglass Book Prize and the Jefferson Davis Award. In 2014, she received the George and Ann Richards Prize for her article published in the Journal of the Civil War Era. Forthcoming works include Women at War (under contract with University of North Carolina Press), Black Women and Children Refugees: A History of War and Refugee Camps in the United States, a study of the experience of enslaved and freed women and children refugees on the battlefields of the Civil War, and a study of Civil War veterans who served in the Egyptian Army in the 1870s entitled Playing “Dixie” in Egypt: Civil War Veterans in the Egyptian Army and Transnational Transcripts of Race, Nation, Empire and Citizenship, 1869-1878. Glymph is co-authoring, with Kendra Field of Tufts University, a book on Mary Virginia Montgomery, a former slave who is one of only two known African American women to have written a diary during Reconstruction.

Glymph is an Organization of American Historians Distinguished Lecturer and has served as a visiting scholar at the Havens Center at the University of Wisconsin, and at Northwestern University and the University of South Carolina. She has delivered distinguished lectures at numerous universities in the U.S. and abroad including the University of Cambridge, UK and the American Philosophical Society and this fall will deliver the 2017 Fortenbaugh Memorial Lecture at the Majestic Theater, Gettysburg Pennsylvania College on the 153rd anniversary of Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address and the 20th Annual Robert Smalls Lecture at the University of South Carolina-Columbia. Glymph was also recently a 2017-18 recipient of the Thomas Langford Lectureship Award at Duke University. In 2015, she received the honor of a nomination by President Barack Obama to the National Council on the Humanities of National Endowment for the Humanities.