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Greg O'Brien

Dr. Greg O'Brien

Contact Information

Email: wgobrien@uncg.edu
Office: 2129 MHRA


Ph.D., University of Kentucky, 1998
M.A., James Madison University, 1994
B.A., Randolph-Macon College, 1988

Academic Positions

Head, Department of History, UNC-Greensboro, 2019-present
Associate Head, Department of History, UNC-Greensboro, 2017-2019
Associate Professor, Department of History, UNC-Greensboro, 2008-present
Executive Editor, Native South journal, 2013-2018
Director of Graduate Studies, Department of History, UNC-Greensboro, 2010-2015
Professor of History at the University of Southern Mississippi, 1998-2008
Visiting Professor of Native American Studies at Dartmouth College, 2004
Director of Graduate Studies, Department of History, U. of Southern Mississippi, 2002-2004

Research Interests

My research interests are in ethnohistory, American Indians of the Southeast, American environmental history (particularly in the South), and the American Revolutionary era. I have focused extensively on Choctaw Indian history before the 1830s.

"Pre-removal Choctaw History with Greg O’Brien," an interview by the Choctaw Nation Historic Preservation Office, October 6, 2020.

Listen to an interview with Dr. O'Brien:

Current Project

My current book project is a study of the 1849 New Orleans flood, the worst flood to hit that city before Hurricane Katrina. My longer-range project is a study of the Seven Years War (French and Indian War) in the South (1750s-1760s) focusing on American Indian diplomatic initiatives and relations between Indians and Europeans.

Courses Taught

  • HIS 209, World Environmental History
  • HIS 211, US History before 1865
  • HIS 322, American Indian History after 1840
  • HIS 323, American Indians and Nature
  • HIS 333, American Indian History to 1840
  • HIS 334, Environmental History of the United States
  • HIS 335, Colonial America
  • HIS 511A, Seminar in Historical Research and Writing: "American Indian History before 1840"
  • HIS 520, Southern History: Southeastern Indian History
  • HIS 522, Revolts and Rebellions in Colonial America
  • HIS 701, Colloquium in US History to 1865
  • HIS 722, Topics in Early American History: Deep and Vast Early America
  • HIS 722, Topics in Early American History: Early American Indian History
  • HIS 722, Topics in Early American History: The American Revolution
  • HIS 723, Topics in 19th Century U.S. History: The Market Revolution

Selected Publications

Book cover Book cover Book cover Book cover Book cover

Selected Awards and Honors

  • Dianne Woest Fellowship in the Arts and Humanities, Historic New Orleans Collection, 2006
  • Mississippi Humanities Council Teacher Award, 2005
  • Who's Who in American Education, 2004
  • McLemore Prize from the Mississippi Historical Society for the best book published on a Mississippi history topic in 2003.
  • Fletcher M. Green and Charles W. Ramsdell Award for the best article published in the Journal of Southern History during the two-preceding years, 2002.

PhD students working with me

  • Jeanna DeVita (entered program in 2021, M.A. from Sam Houston State University), Early American Cultural Brokers
  • Katie Duckworth (entered program in 2018, M.A. from UNCG), Cherokee women and medical practice
  • Ashley Gilbert (entered program in 2019, M.A. from VCU), Taverns and Political Culture in 18th century North Carolina and Virginia
  • Stuart Marshall (entered program in 2019, M.A. from UNCG), Eastern Cherokees in the era of the U.S. Civil War
  • Ethan Moore, (entered program in 2013, MA from UNCG), Chickamauga Cherokee history
  • Jewel Parker (entered program in 2018, MA from Appalachian State University), Intercultural medical practice in the early South
  • Richard Smith, (entered program in 2016, MA from George Mason), race and politics in early Maryland

Dissertations Directed at UNCG

  • Arlen Hanson (MA from UNCG), "Troubled Voices: Choctaws in Mass Deportation and Ethnic Cleansing" (2021)
  • Sarah McCartney (MA from William & Mary), "O'er Mountains And Rivers': Community And Commerce In The Greenbrier River Valley In The Late Eighteenth Century" (2018) Visiting Assistant Professor for the National Institute of American History and Democracy Program at the College of William and Mary
  • Jamie Mize (MA from North Georgia), "Sons of Selu: Manhood and Gendered Power in Cherokee Society, 1775-1846" (2017) Assistant Professor of History at UNC-Pembroke
  • Steven Peach (MA from Northern Illinois), "'The Three Rivers Have Talked': The Creek Indians and Community Politics in the Native South, 1753-1821" (2016) Assistant Professor of History at Tarleton State College
  • Jason Stroud (MA from N.C. State), "Crime, Justice, and Order in the North Carolina Piedmont, 1760-1806" (2019) Assistant Professor of History at Greensboro College, NC
  • Monica R. Ward (MA from Rutgers), "Little Tallassee: A Creek Indian Colonial Town" (2019) Full-time Lecturer at Bryant University, Rhode Island

Curriculum Vitae

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