I came to Strathclyde University in 1989, after teaching American Studies at West London Institute of Higher Education (now Brunel University). My undergraduate teaching has mainly been on American History, particularly during the 20th century and with an emphasis on political and social movements, and International History. My Master's level teaching is directly related to my research on American race relations in the first quarter of the 20th century.
My main interests have been in the impact of World War I on American society, the response of the social sciences to race and other social issues in the United States, the interracial cooperation movement before 1940, racial violence and the origins of the American civil rights movement.
In addition to several journal articles and book chapters, my main publications have been two monographs concerning American race relations during World War I and the southern interracial cooperation movement during the Progressive era and interwar period:
Race, War, and Surveillance: African Americans and the United States Government During World War I (2001);
Race Harmony and Black Progress: Jack Woofter and the Interracial Cooperation Movement (2013).
Both books were published by Indiana University Press.
I am primary supervisor of three PhD students, and second supervisor of four. I have supervised 9 PhDs to completion, four of which were supported by the Buffalo Bill Center of the West and the McCracken Research Library at Cody, Wyoming.
I am currently the Head of the Graduate School of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (HaSS), after being Postgraduate Research Director for History and Modern Langauges in the School of Humanities. I have been Senior Vice Dean of the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences (HaSS) and Vice Dean Academic (twice), with wide-ranging roles that included support for the Faculty Management Team and contributing to the planning process.
I have been an external examiner at the Universities of Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Sussex.
I was the Strathclyde theme leader for the current QAA Enhancement Theme, "Student Transitions" (2014-17).
MA, History, University of Aberdeen
PhD, History, University of Aberdeen
Year 1 British History since 1790 (lectures)
Year 2 History of the USA since 1877
Year 3/4 Slavery in World History
Year 4 The USA Between the Wars (Honours special subject)
Honours Dissertations: 6-10 each year
MSc class: Segregation, Migration & War: African Americans in the Age of Jim Crow, 1900-1930
Recently supervised PhD students
Ball, Barbara. "Differential development on the Ohio River, 1850-1880: A historical and genealogical study of two small towns in Ohio and a rural district of West Virginia, before and after the U.S. Civil War." (Strathclyde thesis no. ). Degree awarded .
Magrin, Alessandra. “The Wild West in Italy and in the Italian Imagination: Travel Writing, Buffalo Bill, and Popular Culture" (Strathclyde thesis no. T15799). Degree awarded 2020.
Delaney, Michelle, "Advance Work: Art and Advertising in Buffalo Bill's Wild West" (Strathclyde thesis no. T14989). Degree awarded 2018.
Johnston, Jeremy. "Two Rough Riders: Buffalo Bill and Theodore Roosevelt's Enigmatic Relationship" (Strathclyde Thesis no. T15278). Degree awarded 2018.
Quail, Benjamin. "Propaganda and the Presidency: An Analysis of Lyndon B. Johnson's Media Relations, 1963-1968" (Strathclyde thesis no. T14871). Degree awarded 2017.
Davies, Gregory Spencer. "Landscape and Myth in the American West: Rival Visions of Utah Territory, 1847-868." (Strathclyde thesis no. T14513) Degree awarded 2016.
Dixon, Christopher. "The Visit by Buffalo Bill's Wild West to Barcelona, December 1899 - January 1890." (Strathclyde thesis no.T13695). Degree awarded 2014
Cuthbert-Kerr, Simon Thomas. "The Development of Black Political Organization in Quitman County, Mississippi, 1945-1975" (Strathclyde thesis no. T11609). Degree awarded 2006
McKinstry, David. "The Politics of Civil Rights, May 1963 to August 1964." (Strathclyde thesis no. T11381). Degree awarded 2005.
Current PhD students
Dominic Allen, The Red Scare on the Waterfront: international suppression of maritime unions during the Cold War.
Shannon Combs-Bennett, The validity of genealogical research provided to lineage organizations through applications in the United States.
Tahitia McCabe, A Historical and Genealogical Analysis of the American Community in Scotland in the 19th Century.
Erin Lux, Criminal Justice and Correction Policy since 1945.
Nicole Willams, A thematic comparative analysis of the Scots-Irish in the southeast US along with Ulster Protestant culture in Ireland in the late 18th and 19th centuries.
Rebekah Chatellier, A Comparative Study on the Unravelling of the Textile Industry in the American South and Northern Britain through Oral History methodologies
Mark Cassidy, Development of the historical narratives of Solid Oxide Fuel Cells
My current research is into the relationship between race, violence and property in rural Georgia after World War I.
Specifically, this means examining changing patterns of black farm ownership and tenancy, migration, the lynching problem and Klan-type activity in groups of small counties in Georgia. Court records and property deeds and transactions, still held in the courthouses of the county towns, are the prime source for this study.
I have also been researching the role of social scientists in the formulation of US government policy in the 20th century and the educational work of the interracial copperation movement in the South.
- Buffalo Bill in Europe
- Dixon, Christopher (Principal Investigator) Ellis, Mark (Co-investigator)
- 01-Jan-2010 - 30-Jan-2013