A history professor at the University of South Carolina Beaufort has been awarded, for the second time, a grant of nearly $200,000 by the National Endowment for the Humanities to conduct a three-week institute for school teachers on the history of Reconstruction and its legacy along America’s South-eastern coast.

  1. Brent Morris, Ph.D., Humanities Department Chair and Associate Professor of History at USCB, will direct the institute. USCB will receive an outright grant of $199,140 to fund the project, titled “America’s Reconstruction: The Untold Story,” in the summer of 2017 for 25 K-12 teachers selected from across the country.

As in 2015, this institute will benefit from the efforts of coordinator Deloris Pringle and the partnership and generous support of the City of Beaufort, Penn Center, the Mitchelville Preservation Project, the Taw Caw Community Outreach Center, the Beaufort County Historical Society, Historic Beaufort Foundation and the University of South Carolina College of Education.

Dr. Morris earned a B.A. degree magna cum laude in history and English language and literature at the University of South Carolina in 2001, and an M.A. degree in history at Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., in 2008. He earned a Ph.D. at Cornell in 2010, specializing in United States and African-American History.

Dr. Morris’s research focuses on slavery, anti-slavery and emancipation in America. He is the author of more than 20 articles, reviews, and encyclopedia entries that have appeared in the New York Times, the Journal of African American History and the South Carolina Historical Magazine. His latest publication, “Yes, Lord, I Know the Road: A Documentary History of African Americans in South Carolina 1526-2008,” will be published in early 2017.

Dr. Morris was the 2010 recipient of the South Carolina Historical Society’s Malcolm C. Clark Award, the 2016 Henry Howe Award of the Ohio Genealogical Society, and is a 2015-2016 University of South Carolina Breakthrough Star for Research and Scholarship.

“Reconstruction is a remarkable time period in American history, that, unfortunately, has been long neglected and overlooked,” Morris said. “Its forgotten history, however, is one of tremendous and revolutionary accomplishment for former slaves. It was when significant numbers of Americans first seriously made an attempt to hold their nation to the rhetoric and egalitarian spirit of the Declaration of Independence and the founding era. Reconstruction actually began in Beaufort County in 1861, the first year of the war.”

This NEH institute will assemble nationally renowned American history scholars to teach the courses. They will explore the topic of Reconstruction and its legacy in South Carolina, Georgia and the Sea Islands. Besides Dr. Morris, instructors for the institute will include local scholars Lawrence S. Rowland, Ph.D., USCB’s Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Stephen Wise, Ph.D., Museum Curator at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, and Dr. Emory Campbell, Penn Center Director Emeritus.

Competition for the 25 available spots for K-12 teachers is expected to be very competitive. Application information may be found at www.USCB.edu/ AmericasReconstruction, and all applications should be postmarked no later than March 1, 2017. The institute will be housed on the Historic Beaufort Campus of the University of South Carolina Beaufort. The class also will spend extended time at the Penn Center on St. Helena Island, Mitchellville on Hilton Head, Charleston and Sapelo Island, Ga.