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Heather Cox Richardson



Office Location: Stokes Hall, Room S335


Twitter: @HC_Richardson

Fields of Interest:

Nineteenth-century U.S. History, politics and economics, antebellum, Civil War and Reconstruction, history of the American West, history education.

Academic profile:

Professor Richardson teaches nineteenth-century American history at both the undergraduate and the graduate level. Her early work focused on the transformation of political ideology from the Civil War to the presidency of Theodore Roosevelt. It examined issues of race, economics, westward expansion, and the construction of the concept of an American middle class. Recently, she has turned her attention to societal systems in the United States, focusing on political parties, economic policy, and law. She is currently working on a history of the Republican Party that stretches from the time of the Northwest Ordinance to 2008. With a historian of China, she is also writing a history of the relationship between America and China from the Civil War/Taiping Uprising to 1900. This project examines the rise and fall of the idea of a late nineteenth-century trans-Pacific world.

Professor Richardson also blogs on historical topics at and at

Representative Publications:

  • Wounded Knee: Party Politics and the Road to an American Massacre (2010)
  • “Richardson’s Rules of Order,” at:
  • West from Appomattox: The Reconstruction of America after the Civil War (2007)
  • “North and West of Reconstruction: Studies in Political Economy,” in Thomas J. Brown, ed., Reconstructions: New Perspectives on the Postbellum United States (2006)
  • The Death of Reconstruction: Race, Labor and Politics in the Post-Civil War North, 1865-1901 (2001)
  • The Greatest Nation of the Earth: Republican Economic Policies during the Civil War (1997)