Office: Burnham Hall, Room 308
Phone: (417) 873-6954
Dr. Dan Livesay received his Ph.D. in History from the University of Michigan in 2010. He came to Drury in 2012 after finishing a two-year NEH postdoctoral fellowship at the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture in Williamsburg, VA. His teaching and research interests focus on the colonial Americas and the Atlantic World in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. His book manuscript, Children of Uncertain Fortune: Mixed-Race West Indians in Britain and the Atlantic Family, 1733–1833 (in progress with the University of North Carolina Press) explores the migration of elite mixed-race individuals from the colonies to Britain in the Georgian period. In analyzing why white fathers sent their offspring of color to live with relatives across the ocean, his study shows how notions of family belonging were crucial to racial ideology in the British Atlantic. He was named the 2014 Sherman Emerging Scholar by the University of North Carolina at Wilmington for this research.
Dr. Livesay is currently working on a second manuscript entitled Endless Bondage: Slavery in Old Age in the Atlantic World. This project examines the lives of elderly slaves in plantations across the Atlantic basin. As enslaved laborers aged, they took on new roles – both in their work, as well as in their communities. They also came to be used as propaganda by slave owners who wished to show the supposed humanity of the peculiar institution, as well as by anti-slavery activists to show the enduring brutality of enslavement. Moreover, they gained prominence when masters manumitted aged workers, who were thought to be financial drains on plantations, and thus produced fears over growing free black populations.
Dr. Livesay teaches courses on the history of early America, transatlantic slavery, Latin America, and indigenous people in the Americas. In class, he seeks to put the history of colonial North America and the early U.S. republic within a wider global context. He has conducted extensive archival research in libraries throughout the Caribbean, Britain, and the United States, funded by long-term fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Fulbright Program (Jamaica), the Institute of Historical Research at the University of London, and the North American Conference on British Studies, as well as research awards from the John D. Rockefeller Library, Huntington Library, American Philosophical Society, and the McMaster University Library.
Born in Wyoming and raised in Colorado, Dr. Livesay misses the Rockies, but greatly enjoys hiking through the beautiful Ozarks around Springfield.
B.A., University of Colorado-Boulder, 2002
Ph.D., University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, 2010
Drury University faculty member since 2012
Assistant Professor since 2012