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Kabria Baumgartner

Dean’s Associate Professor of History and Africana Studies; Associate Director of Public History

Kabria Baumgartner is a historian of the nineteenth-century United States, specializing in the history of education, African American women’s and gender history, and New England studies. She is the author of In Pursuit of Knowledge: Black Women and Educational Activism in Antebellum America, which tells the story of Black girls and women who fought for their educational rights in the nineteenth-century United States. Her book has won four prizes, including the prestigious 2021 American Educational Research Association’s Outstanding Book Award.

She is the recipient of Diverse magazine’s 2020 Emerging Scholar Award. She has been awarded fellowships and grants from the Spencer Foundation, the National Academy of Education, the Massachusetts Historical Society, and most recently the American Antiquarian Society, where she holds the 2022-23 AAS-NEH Long-Term Fellowship.

She has published eleven scholarly articles and book chapters, and her public writing has been featured in the Washington Post, WBUR’s Cognoscenti, and Historic New England Magazine. Strongly committed to public history, she frequently collaborates with historical organizations such as the Black Heritage Trail of New Hampshire on community-engaged histories. She co-curated an historical exhibit on the nineteenth-century youth-led equal school rights movement,  “Let None Be Excluded,” which is on view through April 2024 at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts.

She is completing her second book, Radical Black Excellence: How Black Youth Shaped the Fight for Civil Rights in Boston, which explores Black youth activism and civil rights in nineteenth-century Boston.

  • National Endowment for the Humanities Long-Term Fellowship/American Antiquarian Society, 2022-23
  • Spencer Foundation Research Grant, 2021-23
  • National Endowment for the Humanities Long-Term Fellowship/Massachusetts Historical Society, 2020-21
  • National Academy of Education/Spencer Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2016-18
  • Library Company of Philadelphia/Mellon Program in African American History Postdoctoral Fellowship, 2014-15

“Full and Impartial Justice”: Robert Morris and the Equal School Rights Movement in Massachusetts,” New England Quarterly (2022) 95 (2): 155–191.

National Park Service/Organization of American Historians, Co-Principal Investigator – Historic Resource Study: “African Americans in Essex County, Massachusetts, 2018-22

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