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Areas of Study

The history program at Elizabethtown College covers all periods of Western history, as well as the history of non-Western regions around the world.

Why Study History at Elizabethtown

Small classes; right history; no boundaries...

Meet our Faculty

David Brown
Professor of History, Department Chair | 717-361-1249

David Brown is a student of historiography, political culture, and the intellectual history of America. He regularly teaches courses on these and various other subjects including the Civil War, History and Literature, and Jeffersonian America. He has published in The American Historical Review, The Historian, The Los Angeles Times, and History News Network. The University of Chicago Press nominated his 2006 book, Richard Hofstadter: An Intellectual Biography, for a Pulitzer Prize. His most recent study, Beyond the Frontier: The Midwestern Voice in American Historical Writing, (UCP) appeared in 2009. Dr. Brown is currently writing a history of American conservatism and a biography of F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Máire Johnson
Visiting Assistant Professor of History |

Máire Johnson comes to Elizabethtown College from a three-year position as Visiting Assistant Professor of Medieval History at Oklahoma State University, but her first job out of graduate school was a stint teaching World History at Clarion University of Pennsylvania. She's very pleased to be returning to PA! Máire holds undergraduate degrees from the University of Maryland College Park and graduate degrees from the Centre for Medieval Studies at the University of Toronto. Her research interests focus on the Celtic regions of the Middle Ages, with particular attention to Ireland, Wales, and the Isle of Man. Her teaching interests include: Celtic culture, archaeology, and history; Celtic literature and society; world and western history; medieval civilization; attitudes toward magic and the supernatural in pre-modern Europe; women in the Middle Ages; and medieval law before 1000 CE.


David Kenley
Associate Professor of History | 717-361-1238 | Faculty Website

Dr. David Kenley (Ph.D. University of Hawai'i, M.A. University of Utah, B.A. Brigham Young University) is originally from Salt Lake City, Utah, but has lived for many years in West Virginia, Hawaii, and the Republic of China on Taiwan. Dr. Kenley has been at Elizabethtown College since 2004. His research focuses on the history of Asia, particularly modern China. He is the author of New Culture in a New World (Routledge Press) and other works dealing with Chinese intellectual history and diasporas in world history. He is currently writing a history of the Church of the Brethren missionaries in China in the early twentieth century. Dr. Kenley's family (including his wife, Wendi, and their three children) enjoys skiing, hiking, and traveling. They live in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania.

Brian Newsome
Associate Professor of History | 717-361-1251 | Curriculum Vitae

Dr. Brian Newsome is Associate Professor of History and Assistant Dean for General Education and Assessment. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina and teaches modern European, Middle Eastern, and North African history. Before coming to Elizabethtown College in 2009, Dr. Newsome taught at Alfred University, where he earned a Summer Research Grant, the International Fellowship for Faculty Development, and two awards for outstanding teaching. At Elizabethtown College, he has received two Faculty Research Grants, a Collaborative Interdisciplinary Scholarship Program Grant to promote faculty-student research, Merit Awards for teaching and service, and a Student Senate Engaging Educator Award.

Dr. Newsome specializes in the urban and religious history of nineteenth- and twentieth-century France. His dissertation, which was funded by a Fulbright Grant, led to articles in French Historical Studies and French Politics, Culture and Society, among others, as well as his book on French Urban Planning, 1940-1968: The Construction and Deconstruction of an Authoritarian System (New York: Peter Lang, 2009). Most recently, Dr. Newsome has been analyzing French Catholic youth and adult organizations, leading to two articles in Historical Reflections/Réflexions historiques (which he recently joined as co-editor) and one in Transaction Publishers’ series Religion and Public Life. His current project is on the Catholic novelist Maxence Van der Meersch and the latter’s account of the German invasion and occupation of northern France during World War I. Dr. Newsome is also past president of the New York State Association of European Historians. 

Gabriel R. Ricci
Associate Professor of Humanities | 717-361-1139

Gabriel R. Ricci has taught in the History and Philosophy Departments at Elizabethtown College since 1996, and served as the chair of the History Department from 2004 to 2011. Ricci teaches courses in The Ancient World, the Enlightenment, and Applied Ethics. He pursued graduate work at the University of Hamburg and Temple University; where after a post-doctoral teaching fellowship he taught for ten years. His early research interests were in German historicism, Giambattista Vico, Ernst Troeltsch, Martin Heidegger and Continental Philosophy. This concentration led to his translation of Victor Farias’ Heidegger and Nazism (Temple University, 1989); the publication of Time Consciousness, The Philosophical Uses of History (Transaction Publisher, 2002) and The Tempo of Modernity (Transaction Publisher, 2011). He has been the editor of the annual series Religion & Public Life (Transaction Publisher) since 1999 and he has just been appointed the editor of a new annual series, Culture and Civilization (Transaction Publisher). Current research interests address the relationship between nature and norm in the ancient world and the intersection of European philosophy and literature in the early twentieth century.

Thomas R. Winpenny
Professor of History | 717-361-1242

Professor Thomas R. Winpenny grew up in the city of Philadelphia and attended the public schools there. He earned a B.A. and M.A. in history from the Pennsylvania State University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Delaware where he was a Hagley Fellow. Professor Winpenny has published two books on the Industrial Revolution and two books on structural steel bridges and their social impact. He is the author of numerous articles, conference papers, and book reviews. He has served as Editor for Pennsylvania History and for the Economic and Business Historical Society. His primary research focus is on 19th and 20th century American business, industry, and technology. His teaching interests include: American Economic History, Technology and Values, 20th Century America, and the American History survey. Professor Winpenny's History of Phoenix Bridge received a book award from Gordon Breach science publishers.

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