McMinn Fellows

The McMinn Fellowship

The McMinn Fellowship was inaugurated in 2010 in honor of William A. McMinn. He was a lifelong philanthropist with roots in Mississippi. A businessman and community leader with a diverse array of interests, Bill McMinn consistently championed the importance of education and history. His generous spirit has benefitted universities across the South.

The McMinn Fellowship enables doctoral candidates at the University of Mississippi to advance their dissertation research and encourages new scholarship on the Civil War. 

 
 

The McMinn Fellows

2016

Nicholas Mosvick

Nicholas Mosvick grew up in Minnesota and is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Mississippi. He received a Bachelor's degree in History and Political Science summa cum laude at the University of Minnesota. He earned his J.D. and Master's degree in History from the University of Virginia through their legal history joint-degree program. After working for a prominent think tank in Washington DC on constitutional issues and amicus briefs, he decided to pursue his Doctorate from the University of Mississippi in 2013. His research interests include constitutional and legal history of the Civil War and Reconstruction, as well as the early history of constitutional interpretation, slavery and the law, and the legacy of free labor constitutionalism. His dissertation will examine the popular constitutional discourse concerning conscription in the North during the Civil War, focusing primarily on the year of 1863 in the states of Pennsylvania and New York, where dissent was visible not only the in newspapers and streets, but inside the courtrooms as well. Mr. Mosvick hopes to add to the understanding of the changing nature of interpreting the Constitution during the Civil War Era.

 

2015

Thomas W. Robinson

Thomas W. Robinson grew up in Florida and is a Ph.D. Candidate at the University of Mississippi. He received a Bachelor's degree in History and a Master's degree in Library and Information Studies from Florida State University. After working in public history at both museums and archives for several years, he decided to go back to school and earned a Master's degree in History from James Madison University before pursuing a Doctorate from the University of Mississippi in 2012. His research interests include southern dissent, southern nationalism, citizenship and identity, sectionalism, and the Western theater of the war. His dissertation will examine the growth of a white middle class in Georgia during the late antebellum period. This group formed their own distinct identity and ideology that often conflicted with southern norms. Many middle class Georgians became dissenters during the secession crisis and the war years and the dissertation will hone in on those men and women. Mr. Robinson hopes to broaden the understanding of the scope and source of dissent in the South during the Civil War Era.

 

2014

Christine A. Rizzi

Christine A. Rizzi received undergraduate degrees in both History and Philosophy at Flagler College in her native state of Florida. She earned her Master of Arts degree in History from the University of Mississippi in 2012. Rizzi remained at the University of Mississippi to continue working with its excellent faculty and she is now a Doctoral Candidate. Her research interests include race, class, gender, and identity formation in 19th and 20th century America. Her dissertation will explore the intersection of mobility and identity in Civil War Era Florida among Seminole Indians, white pioneers and investors, enslaved African Americans, and Civil War soldiers and civilians. Rizzi aims to draw Florida into a broad understanding of the Civil War Era that revolves around questions of belonging, citizenship, and the role of the state.

 

2013

Boyd Harris

Boyd R. Harris hails from the foothills of North Carolina and is currently a doctoral candidate in History at the University of Mississippi.  He attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and graduated with a double major in Peace, War, and Defense and History in 2003.  Harris received his Masters of Arts in History from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in 2010.  His research interests include nineteenth and twentieth-century American history, with an emphasis on public history and memory.  His dissertation will examine the creation and development of Civil War battlefield state parks and their role in perpetuating Lost Cause memory into the twenty-first century.  During the summer he works as a seasonal park ranger at Appomattox Court House National Historic Park.

 

2012

Amy L. Fluker

Amy L. Fluker graduated summa cum laude from Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri in 2008 and received her Master of Arts degree in history from the Univeristy of Mississippi in 2010. That same year, she entered the PhD program at the University of Mississippi. Her dissertation project will examine Missouri's unique role in the Civil War and distinctive mode of post-war commemoration. Fluker hopes this work will mark the inclusion of the widely neglected border states into our understanding of Civil War memory. 

2011

Miller "Bill" Boyd, III

Miller "Bill" Boyd III, a native of St. Louis, is a 1998 honors graduate of Xavier University of Louisiana. In 2006, he received a Masters in African-American Studies from Boston University. His final Masters project entitled "Privilege Lost: Shifting Creole Identity in Antebellum  Louisiana" was published in The Griot: The Journal for the Southern Conference on African-American Studies in 2007, winning the organization's top honor for scholarship that year. Boyd began working on his Ph.D. in Early American History at the University of Mississippi in 2008. His dissertation, tentatively entitled "The Exigencies of War:  the African-American response to the Civil War in Missouri" examines black military participation, contraband free labor, education, and the struggle for a semblance of economic and social parity in the largest border state. As a result of his scholarship, Boyd has received numerous awards and fellowships including the Robert Eldridge Seiler Supreme Court of Missouri Historical Society Fellowship and the William Foley Research Fellowship.

 

2010

Rachel Smith Purvis

Rachel S. Purvis is currently a history Ph.D. candidate at the University of Mississippi. She received a Bachelor of Arts in history from the University of Arkansas in 2002. She earned a Master of Arts in history from the University of Mississippi in 2005. Purvis's research interests include nineteenth-century America, with a particular focus on race and nationalism. Her dissertation project, "'Maintaining intact our homogeneousness': Race, Citizenship, & Reconstructing Cherokee' examines the rebirth of the Cherokee Nation after the Civil War emphasizing the intersection of race, citizenship, and nationalism. The history of the Cherokee Naiton in the tumultous era following the Civil War contributes an alternative story of Reconstrcution to the current scholarship, one that expands the typical timeframe and geographic scope of previous studies. Purvis was recently awarded the Cassius Marcellus Clay Postdoctoral Fellowship from Yale University and the Gilder Lehrman Center for the Study of Slavery, Resistance, and Aboloition. The Clay Fellow performs independent research in nineteenth-century U.S. history with a special interest in the age of slavery, emancipation, the Civil War, and Reconstruction during the two-year appointment.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nicholas Mosvick