U.S.; the Civil War and Reconstruction; slave emancipation; citizenship
Office: Harris Hall #202
Kate Masur (PhD University of Michigan 2001) works in nineteenth-century U.S. history, with particular emphasis on how Americans confronted the political and social problems posed by the end of slavery. A faculty affiliate of the Department of African American Studies, she is the author of An Example for All the Land: Emancipation and the Struggle over Equality in Washington, D.C. (University of North Carolina Press, 2010). Professor Masur has published several scholarly journal articles, including most recently, “Patronage and Protest in Kate Brown’s Washington,” Journal of American History (March 2013). Her writing has also appeared in the op-ed pages of the New York Times, the Chronicle of Higher Education, and The Atlantic Online.
Professor Masur is the recipient of numerous honors and awards, including fellowships from the Library of Congress’s John W. Kluge Center and the National Endowment for the Humanities. The recipient of a 2010 ACLS/Ryskamp fellowship, she is currently working on two research projects. One concerns African Americans, federal employment, and the Republican party in the post-Civil War period. Here she is interested in government work as a source of economic stability and upward mobility for African Americans, the nineteenth-century Republican party’s struggles with race, and the meanings of federal enclaves in the post-Confederate South. In a separate project she is investigating the demise of slavery in the Upper Chesapeake region during the first year of the Civil War, paying special attention to how local police and military officials enforced fugitive slave laws. Before joining the Northwestern faculty, she spent two years as an editor at the Freedmen and Southern Society Project at the University of Maryland. She is a co-editor of the project's forthcoming volume, Freedom: A Documentary History of Emancipation, 1861-1867, ser. 3, vol. 2: Land and Labor, 1866-1867.
Professor Masur teaches general courses in U.S. history and more specialized topics such as the Civil War and Reconstruction, Abraham Lincoln, civil rights in the nineteenth century, and comparative emancipations. She has recently added U.S. women’s history to her repertoire.