Online gift button


Welcome to the Department of History!


History Department


Facebook Icon  Instagram Icon  YouTube Icon


Winthrop's Department of History is home to an impressive group of teacher/scholars who cover a wide range of fields grounded in active research and reflected in an array of scholarship from digital works to traditional monographs (check department news below for recent examples). The department offers programs of study leading to the BA in History, the BA History with Educational Studies Minor for teacher track, and the MA in History. The department also offers study in Digital History, Oral History, and, through affiliation with The Louise Pettus Archives and historic sites, Public History. The Department of History is located in Bancroft Hall in the heart of the Winthrop campus. 


Want to Teach? Major in History!

History BA students wishing to pursue a career as a history teacher will minor in Educational Studies, leading to admission into the accelerated MAT program. Completion of this degree plan will not only prepare students for a teaching career but will open that career on a substantially higher pay scale on which all future increases will be based. In other words, a short-term investment in the MAT will translate to long-long benefits that will continue to offer rewards throughout a career in the classroom.  For more information, click here and/or contact Dr. Jennifer Dixon-McKnight or Dr. Greg Bell. 


Don't Want to Teach? Major in History!

History Careers (PDF - 35.6 KB)


Bancroft- angled



Congratulations to this year's History Department Scholarship Recipients/Award Winners!

  • Bert Viault Award Winner: Cody Cook, Honorable Mentions: Mary Ashlyn Churray, Melanie Yerkes
  • Fred Hembree Scholarship Recipient: Amber Downs, Kaleb Osten
  • Gillespie Scholarship Recipient: Alexander Constantine
  • John Winthrop Endowed Scholarship Recipient: Briana Tillman, Nerena Gause
  • John Winthrop History Award Winner: Phillip Byars
  • Maggie Elrod Scholarship Recipient: Madison Bray
  • Ross A. Webb Award Winner: Madison Bray

Departmental Events: Past and Present


Samaurai Spirit                     Graduate Conference 2023        


On Becoming Catawba                     International Peace Day 2023


Winthrop University hosted the 2023 Southeastern Medieval Association (SEMA) conference from Oct. 12-14. The campus welcomed nearly 150 participants from across the United States and three other countries to present papers and research on topics in Medieval Studies.

The annual conference offered a place for collaboration and an exchange of innovative ideas and new methodologies among scholars to promote pedagogical growth within the disciplines of Medieval Studies. This year’s program included sessions featuring everything from medieval manuscripts to Chat GPT, experiential learning and virtual reality, to manga and architecture, and a wide variety of approaches to literary, historical and political study.

SEMA logo



Departmental Highlights

America A Work in Progress

Dr. Eddie Lee has collaborated with Professor Susan Autry, former history chair at  Central Piedmont Community College, to write the comprehensive two volume America: A Work In Progress , which was published this summer by Kendell Hunt Publishing Company. Lee and Autry, who Lee taught thirty years ago, have prepared a fresh narrative history of America from the time of the arrival of the first indigenous people thousands of years ago to the arrival of the Covid pandemic in 2020.  



the first mistake

 Dr. Edward Lee, Professor of History and Director of Graduate Studies, has a new book titled, "The First Mistake: America in Vietnam, 1945-1954", now available here!

"When writing about the Vietnam War, most scholars focus on the 1960s. But in this hard-hitting analysis, eminent historian Dr. J. Edward Lee focuses instead on the key period of 1945 to 1954, the first decade of America's Vietnam War experience. He suggests that as the Cold War commenced in 1945, America failed to remember our nation's own revolutionary experience and the importance of independence and self-determination, missing an opportunity to build a positive relationship with Ho Chi Minh when we aided the return of French colonialism instead of working with him to achieve his country's independence from imperialist France. A must-read for university classes studying the 20th century, veterans groups, and anyone interested in the gritty history of the Vietnam War."



Greg Bell BookDr. Greg Bell, Assistant Professor of History and Program Director for the Medieval Studies Program, has a new book, "Logistics of the First Crusade" that is now available!

Logistics of the First Crusade: Acquiring Supplies amid Chaos looks at the plans that they made and the methods they implemented to sustain themselves on this remarkable expedition in an attempt to understand how they persisted on the First Crusade. Alex Roland, Duke University, states, "this thoroughly researched and richly detailed study of supplying the First Crusade makes two important contributions. It demonstrates firstly that the crusaders were capable, thoughtful, effective, judicious and-if necessary-ruthless supplying themselves. Secondly, the First Crusade's logistical success reveals more skillful leadership than previous scholarship has usually portrayed." 


Dr. Andy Doyle is now featured in ESPN's series, Saturdays in the South, which chronicles the history of SEC Football. 

                                   Saturdays in the South



Rakestraw Webster

Dr. Donald Rakestraw's new book on Daniel Webster is now available from Rowman & Littlefield and debuts with the endorsements of a number of prominent scholars of Nineteenth-century U.S. History and Foreign Relations:

"A finely crafted, well-researched, and carefully reasoned study of Daniel Webster as diplomatist as well as politician and lawyer. Nowhere else can both academics and general readers find a more succinct yet thorough account of this multifaceted figure who, with Henry Clay and John C. Calhoun, made up the "Great Triumvirate" that dominated the political stage of mid-nineteenth-century America."
Howard Jones, University of Alabama


 Are you a current student or alumni of the History Department and want to share your achievements? We would love to hear from you! Please send us your news at Thank you!






US History courses that satisfy the General Education Constitution requirement address by nature and design America’s foundational documents. These include but are not limited to the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Federalist Papers, and essential Supreme Court decisions as relevant to the period covered by the course. All documents will be made available by individual course instructors as will specific guidance as to their application. Eager students, however, may consider consulting sources such as Yale Law School’s Avalon Project to begin the exploration.

For the general approach to the Constitution and its evolution presented in HIST 211 and HIST 212, click here (pdf - 60.3 KB).