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University Libraries

USC Appoints University Historian

Dr. Evan Faulkenbury, associate professor of history at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Cortland, will join the University of South Carolina as its University Historian on August 16, 2024.  

Dr. Faulkenbury is currently an associate professor of history at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Cortland. In addition to teaching United States history with a focus on civil rights, African American history, public history, and historical methods, he is a dedicated public historian who has engaged fellow historians, students, and the public through partnerships with local history organizations, by conducting oral histories, leading book clubs in public libraries, writing monthly history columns in newspapers, and working with the National Council on Public History (NCPH) as a lead editor for History@Work. 

Dr. Faulkenbury is the author of numerous peer-reviewed articles in scholarly journals as well as a monograph, Poll Power: The Voter Education Project and the Movement for the Ballot in the American South (University of North Carolina Press, 2019).  He is the co-editor (with Julia Brock) of Teaching Public History (University of North Carolina Press, 2023).  His forthcoming volume, Remembering Rebellion: A Public History of Slave Revolts Across America, is under contract with the University of South Carolina Press.  A native of North Carolina, he earned his PhD from UNC—Chapel Hill in 2016, and he looks forward to returning to the region with his family. 

The University Historian position was created by President Michael Amiridis in response to the report of the Presidential Commission on University History, formed in 2019.  The full report of the Commission and other materials are available online at its website. Dr. Faulkenbury’s appointment is the culmination of an extensive national search that attracted a large and highly competitive group of candidates.  

Housed in University Libraries, the University Historian serves as the principal resource on matters of historic interpretation, representation, and commemoration of the University of South Carolina for the university community and beyond.  Dr. Faulkenbury will engage with the community to tell the University of South Carolina’s story fully, with historical accuracy, through a variety of forums and media, and will advise University leadership on matters surrounding building names, historical markers and monuments, and public art.  Dr. Faulkenbury will also research, create, and disseminate original scholarship on the University’s past in collaboration with appropriate campus partners and other relevant university, local, regional, and state entities. 

“We are thrilled than Evan Faulkenbury will be joining us as our first-ever University Historian,” says David Banush, Dean of Libraries.  “Dr. Faulkenbury’s experience as both an academic and public historian, his work with a wide variety of audiences, and his enthusiasm for exploring and sharing the full story of the University of South Carolina made him stand out in a highly competitive group of candidates.”

For Dr. Faulkenbury, the opportunity to serve as historian for a university rich in historical tradition made the position irresistible. "USC cares about its history,” he says. “Anyone who walks around the Horseshoe can see that. I wanted to come to USC because there is already a tradition in place that values the past. I'm looking forward to collaborating with folks from across campus and the wider community who have already been doing this work."

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