The Summersell Center cosponsors public lecture by novelist Lois Leveen

Leveen posterThe Summersell Center is pleased to cosponsor with the Department of American Studies a talk by Lois Leveen, author of the Civil War novel “The Secrets of Mary Bowser.” On Wednesday, March 25, she will deliver a lecture entitled “Fighting Memory: What We’re Still Learning about Race, Gender, and the Civil War,” at 6 pm in Gorgas Library Room 125. This event is free and open to the public.

2015 Fellowship Program Open for Applications

To support the study of southern history and promote the use of the collections housed at the University of Alabama, the Frances S. Summersell Center for the Study of the South and the University of Alabama Libraries will offer a total of eight fellowships in the amount of $500 each for researchers whose projects entail work to be conducted in southern history or southern studies at the W.S. Hoole Special Collections Library (, the A.S. Williams III Americana Collection (, or in other University of Alabama collections.

Applicants should submit the following:

  • A current CV
  • A description of the research project, no longer than two double-spaced pages, which includes a description of the particular resources to be used during the term of the fellowship
  • One letter of recommendation (which may be sent under separate cover)

The deadline for applications to be received by the Summersell Center is March 27, 2015. Decisions regarding awards will be made by May 15, 2015, and research may be conducted anytime between June 1, 2015 and May 31, 2016. Both academic and non-academic researchers at any stage of their careers are encouraged to apply. Because fellowships are designed primarily to help defray travel and lodging expenses, however, eligibility is restricted to researchers living outside the Tuscaloosa area.

Please submit all application materials electronically to Joshua Rothman, Director of the Summersell Center, at Applicants or letter writers preferring to send hard copies of materials may do so, to the following address:

Frances S. Summersell Center for the Study of the South
Department of History
University of Alabama
Box 870212
202 ten Hoor Hall
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487

Any questions about the fellowships may be directed to

The Summersell Center Cosponsors Jose Galvez Photography Exhibit and Lecture

Jose Galvez Exhibit2 The Summersell Center is please to be a cosponsor of an exhibit of photographs by Jose Galvez, who has documented the Latino experience in the United States for more than 40 years. The exhibit, which focuses on the Latino experience in the American South, will be on display in the Ferguson Center Art Gallery on the University of Alabama campus through the month of October, and Mr. Galvez will be delivering a lecture about his work on October 13 at 7 pm in the gallery. This event is open to the public, but attendees are requested to acquire a free ticket at

Druid City Garden Party, September 14

Promotion Poster_11x17_4.1.4_REV_FINAL 2014The Summersell Center is proud to be a sponsor of the Druid City Garden Project’s annual Garden Party, taking place Sunday, September 14, from 5-8 pm at the Tuscaloosa River Market. Tickets are $45 in advance, $50 at the door, and proceeds support the Garden Project, one of the finest community programs in West Alabama.

Summersell Center Announces Winner of Second Biennial Deep South Book Prize

The Frances S. Summersell Center for the Study of the South is pleased to announce that the winner of the second biennial Deep South Book Prize is Joseph Crespino, for his book Strom Thurmond’s America (Hill and Wang). While never shying away from Thurmond’s racism, hypocrisy, and opportunism, Crespino’s work also offers a provocative and fascinating portrayal of Thurmond as an innovator with great foresight in American politics, and as a pioneer of the modern conservative movement. Our hearty congratulations to Mr. Crespino, who is professor of history at Emory University.

Receiving honorable mentions from the Summersell Center are five additional books, each of which provided the book prize committee with hard choices and each of which is deserving of praise in its own right. They are, in alphabetical order:

Carole Emberton, Beyond Redemption: Race, Violence, and the American South after the Civil War (Chicago)

Steven C. Hahn, The Life and Times of Mary Musgrove (Florida)

Gregory D. Smithers, Slave Breeding: Sex, Violence, and Memory in African American History (Florida)

Sue [Lorenzi] Sojourner, with Cheryl Reitan, Thunder of Freedom: Black Leadership and the Transformation of 1960s Mississippi (Kentucky)

Sarah Woolfolk Wiggins, ed., with Ruth Smith Truss, The Journal of Sarah Haynsworth Gayle, 1827-1835: A Substitute for Social Intercourse (Alabama)

Summersell Center Announces Fellowship Recipients for 2014-2015

The Frances S. Summersell Center and the University of Alabama Libraries are pleased to announce that short-term fellowships were awarded to the following applicants and projects for use during the 2014-2015 academic year. The eight fellowships were awarded based on the overall quality of the applications, the promise of the projects for future publication, and the ability of the applicants to make maximum use of collections and materials housed at the University of Alabama.

Samantha Bryant, Ph.D candidate in History, University of Nebraska, “Southern Jewish Student Activism and the Civil Rights Movement.”

Le Datta Grimes, Ph.D Candidate in History, University of Kentucky, “They Are Becoming Conscious: Kentucky’s Rosenwald Schools, Black Education, Black Communities, and Black Activism.”

Hunter Jackson, Ph.D candidate in Geography, CUNY Graduate Center, “’In Certain Respects, the Future Looks Bright:’ Migration, Criminalization, and Race-Making in 21st Century Alabama.”

Jessica Barbata Jackson, Ph.D candidate in History, UC-Santa Cruz, “Italian Immigrants, Race, and the Jim Crow South.”

Brian Craig Miller, Associate Professor of History, Emporia State University, “The United Confederate Veterans in History and Memory”

Evan Rothera, Ph.D candidate in History, Pennsylvania State University, “Prentiss Ingraham’s Transnational World: Exile, Leniency, Violence, and Reconstructions in America.”

Franklin Sammons, Ph.D candidate in History, UC-Berkeley, “Slavery, Commodity Chains, and Capital Flows in Antebellum Alabama and the Atlantic World.”

James Hill Welborn III, Ph.D candidate in History, University of Georgia, “Drinkin’, Fightin’, Prayin’: The Southern White Male in the Civil War Era.”

Photography Exhibit and Film Screening on School Resegregation

grandchildren of brown_tnOn May 2, 2014, a photography exhibit entitled “Grandchildren of Brown: Student Photos on Race in Tuscaloosa, 60 Years Later,” will open at the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center in downtown Tuscaloosa. Coinciding with the 60th anniversary of the landmark Brown v. Board of Education ruling and with the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, this exhibit is in conjunction with “Segregation Now,” a ProPublica/Atlantic magazine project on the resegregation of public schools in the South and throughout the nation. The exhibit opening will run from 6:30-8:30 pm and will display photographs taken by students at Tuscaloosa’s Northridge and Central high schools. There will also be a documentary film screening and a student panel discussion. The exhibit is free and open to the public and will run through May 18.

Summersell Center Welcomes Josh Penn, of Court 13

poster v4-2_tnPlease join the Summersell Center as we help welcome Josh Penn of the New Orleans-based independent filmmaking collective Court 13, best known for Beasts of the Southern Wild, to the University. Mr. Penn will be screening and answering questions about the short film Glory at Sea, at 7 pm on Wednesday, April 16, in Room 110 of the AIME Building. This event is free and open to the public.

Kathryn Stockett reflects on “The Help”

Kathryn Stockett Poster_tnThe Summersell Center is pleased to announce its cosponsorship of a talk by Kathryn Stockett, author of The Help, who will reflect on the story behind the best-selling novel. The talk, which is free and open to the public, will be held on Friday, February 28, at 3 pm in the Moody Music Concert Hall on the University of Alabama campus.

Unchaining Alabama: An Exhibition of Student Research on Slavery at the University

From February 3-21 in the Williams Room on the third floor of Gorgas Library, an exhibition of research by Ben Flax, an undergraduate at the University of Alabama will be on display. Documenting aspect of the University’s historical association with the institution of slavery prior to the Civil War, the exhibition will be formally opened with an event and small reception on Thursday, February 6, from 5:30-7:30. For more about the exhibition, see here.