Department of History

Experience History - students visit Fort Fisher historic site
Investigating the Past -  professor with books
experience history - students visit fort fisher historic site
a city rich in history - image of Wilmington


Statement of Values


Dear History majors,

As the University continues to create new policies and structures to support you during this tumultuous time, the history faculty wanted to reach out to you as well to let you know:

We’re here for you and we believe in you.

We know this is a tough time. We’re all facing our own challenges, whether it is caring for loved ones, financial stress, or perhaps just dealing with an existential boredom that comes with proper self-isolation measures. The university has just enacted a P/F option for all courses to help support those who are struggling. But we also want you to know that if you’re floundering in your history classes you should reach out to your professors. There are many ways we can help you succeed under these less-than-ideal circumstances, such as extra one-on-one attention, extensions, and even incompletes that can extend into the summer. We will only know how to help if you reach out, though, so please don’t hesitate to do so.

Know that the faculty believe in you and in the value of studying history. We have watched you deal with crisis after crisis over the past few years and know that you have the ability to adapt and succeed, and even flourish. As I’m sure you have recognized, nearly all of your history classes have in some way become more relevant during this pandemic. There are the obvious connections between now and the various plagues in history that you have encountered in your survey classes or the more specific plague classes taught by Dr. Usilton. Or, maybe you’ve taken history classes that touch on the development of science and medicine with Dr. Crowe, Dr. Mollenauer, Dr. Johnson, or Dr. Laursen. You have also probably thought about the structures of government power and the conflict between individual liberty, regulation, and the public good that you’ve learned about in classes such as those taught by Dr. Houpt, Dr. Zombek, Dr. Le Zotte, Dr. Harris, Dr. Hart, and others. History is always relevant, but in tough times it seems even more so.

Going forward, historians will be integral in learning and communicating the lessons from this period. As history majors you will have the tools not only to help articulate them, but also help differentiate between the flawed and strong arguments, between those that advance agendas rather than use proper historical methodology, and between those properly contextualize and those that fail to do so. It’s what we do and what we train you do as history majors.

We’re proud to be historians, and proud of you. We miss the active halls of Morton and look forward to seeing you again in the fall.


The UNCW History Faculty


Welcome to the Department of History

We invite you to get to know our faculty, share some of our student success stories, and learn about our ongoing projects and programs.  We are proud of what goes on in our department and across our curriculum as we teach, research, and write about the history of just about everywhere. See our video here!

The History Department is pleased to announce that the M.A. program for professional history educators (ONLINE) applications for admission in the Fall 2020 semester open February 1, 2020. Applications will be reviewed as they are received. There are a limited number of spaces, and we expect the program to fill up quickly, so those interested in applying are encouraged to do so soon! In the event that spaces remain in the program new applications will be entertained until July 1, 2020.