Student Profiles

The graduate program in history currently has 58 students (28 PhD and 30 MA students).
The following profiles represent only those students who voluntarily provided information for the website.

PhD Students


Scott Berthelette

PhD Student

Dissertation Title: The French Delusion of Empire: Native Traders and French Explorers in the Petit Nord and Northern Great Plains, 1731-1763.

Supervisor: Dr. Robert Englebert

Dissertation Description: My doctoral research examines how the eighteenth century Indigenous peoples of the Petit Nord and Northern Great Plains – Cree, Assiniboine, and Dakota – resisted creating a middle ground with French newcomers, as they had little desire or need of French mediation in their territories. In particular, the French officer Pierre Gaultier de La Vérendrye found himself on a Native ground, where Native politics, not French imperialism, dictated the terms of alliance. My research focuses on the disparities between the rhetoric and the reality of French Empire west of the Great Lakes. Rather than affirming the realities of inter-village relations, the linguistic conventions of the French alliance betrayed French fantasies for a paternalistic empire in the heart of North America

Fields of Expertise: French colonial history, Aboriginal history, New France, Atlantic World


Berthelette, Scott. “Frères et Enfants du même Père” : The French Illusion of Empire West of the Great Lakes, 1731-1743.” Early American Studies (Winter, 2016): Forthcoming.

Berthelette, Scott. “The Making of a Manitoban Hero: Commemorating La Vérendrye in St. Boniface and Winnipeg 1886-1938.” Manitoba History 74 (Winter, 2014): 15-25.

Berthelette, Scott. “La Vérendrye’s ‘Middle Ground’: Village and Imperial Politics in the Northwest, 1731-1743.” Strata 5 (2013): 1-31.

Conference Presentations (Select):

Rupert’s Land Colloquium, University of Alberta. “Frères et Enfants du même Père: French Conceptions of Alliance and Diplomacy in the Petit Nord, 1731-1743.” (2014).

The Fort Garry Lectures, University of Manitoba. “Frères et Enfants du même Père: French Conceptions of Alliance and Diplomacy in the Petit Nord, 1731-1743.” (2014).

The Imperial Project and Projections of Empire Conference, University of Alberta. “Frères et Enfants du même Père: French Conceptions of Alliance and Diplomacy in the Petit Nord, 1731-1743.” (2014).


ChassePatrick Chassé


Supervisor: Jim Handy 

Dissertation Description: His dissertation explores the environmental and social consequences of the industrialization of agriculture in Guatemala, 1945-1980. His case study is the Pacific Coast of Guatemala. He is using historical GIS techniques, maps and records from the agrarian reform (1952-1954) and census data to reconstruct land use and displacement in this understudied region. He is a member of the Sustainable Farming Systems (SFS) project based at the University of Saskatchewan.

Auger-DayCeilidh Auger Day

PhD Candidate

Supervisor: Erika Dyck

Dissertation Description: My research explores changing concepts of desirability/undesirability within North American culture in the first half of the twentieth century. 


Michelle Desveaux

PhD Candidate

Dissertation Title: Engaging Historical Consciousness: The Coexistence, Convergence, and Counterpoint of Canadian and Indigenous Histories (working title)

Supervisor: Dr. Keith Carlson 

Dissertation Descriptions: My research focuses on historical consciousness and the various manifestations of academic, public, and everyday history. Specifically, I investigate the influence of and on historical consciousness in places where Canadian and Indigenous histories meet, meld, and challenge each other. For my dissertation, three case studies will address this point of inquiry: the Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site; the National Archives and Victoria Island; and Indigenous stand-up comedy.

Fields of Expertise: Canadian historiography; historical consciousness; comparative Indigenous history; orality and literacy.

Publications (Select):

Corresponding author with Patrick Chassé, Glenn Iceton, Anne Janhunen, and Omeasoo Wāhpāsiw. “Twenty-First Century Indigenous Historiography: Twenty-Two Books That Need to be Read.” Canadian Journal of History/Annales canadiennes d’histoire 50.3 (Winter 2015): 524-548.

Conference Presentations (Select):

“Intersections of Historical Consciousness at the Fortress of Louisbourg and the National Archives: Writing the Present by Contesting the Past.” International Conference on the Study of Canada, Trent University, May 2015.

de witt

Jessica DeWitt

PhD Candidate

Supervisor: Dr. Geoff Cunfer

Dissertation Description: My dissertation is a comparative study of provincial and state parks, which defines the unique role that these park "middlemen" play in North American society. Focusing on the park systems of Idaho, Alberta, Ontario, and Pennsylvania, my dissertation explores the role that population density and urban centers play in the formation and management of state and provincial parks. By studying two park systems in the East and the West, this study determines whether North American ideas about nature are better described by an East/West bifurcation than the Canadian/US border. This study also challenges the typical environmental decline narrative assigned to national and state parks, in which parks scholars present parks as being the ironic victims of the same recreation and visitation that led to their initial preservation. My dissertation looks at the role that state and provincial parks played in the environmental restoration of the park lands and the regions surrounding the parks. Lastly, my dissertation unveils factors other than preservation and economic gain, such as patriotism and guilt, that led to state and provincial park formation by looking at the reactions and opinions of the common people--both the rural citizens living near the parks and the urban working and middle-classes for whom the parks were created.  

Fields of Expertise: Park History; Recreation; Tourism/Eco-tourism; Urban Nature; North American Environmental History; Canadian and American West; Contemporary US History.


Jessica DeWitt, “Between Stewardship and Exploitation: Private Tourism, State Parks, and Environmentalism,” RCC Perspectives: Environmental Knowledge, Environmental Politics (2016): 41-46.

Jessica DeWitt, “Parks For and By the People: Acknowledging Ordinary People in the Formation, Protection, and Use of State and Provincial Parks,” in Environmental Activism on the Ground: Processes and Possibilities of Small Green and Indigenous Organizing, eds. Liza Piper and Jonathan Clapperton, under contract with University of Calgary Press (expected 2017).

Conference Presentations (Select):

“'Fortunately Our American Neighbours have been Experimenting’: Influences and Objectives During the Formative Years of the Albertan Park System, 1930-1960,” Western Canadian Studies Association 2015, University of Manitoba, November 5-7, 2015.

“Middle Park Syndrome: Securing a Place for Provincial and State Park History in Canadian and US Conservation History,” American Society for Environmental History, Seattle, April 1, 2016.

“Tales of a Park Not Yet Created: The Fish Creek Provincial Park Questionnaire, 1974,” Canadian Historical Association, 2016, University of Calgary, May 30-June 1, 2016.

"'Oh, that doesn't count. You've got to have a park with water': Visualizing the Flexibility of “Natural” in Pennsylvania’s State Parks," Pennsylvania Historical Association, 2016, Shippensburg University, October 6-8, 2016.

Amanda Fehr

Amanda Fehr

PhD Candidate

Dissertation Title: Nations Transformed?: Continuity and Change in Aboriginal Histories of Catholicism in Northwestern Saskatchewan

Supervisor: Dr. Keith Carlson 

Dissertation Description: My research and teaching can be characterized by a commitment to community engagement. I employ ethnohistorical methodologies to consider how various communities historicize past events, how different understandings of the past compare to one another and change over time, and what these understandings suggest for how people identify themselves. I have been working with the Metis community of Ile-a-la-Crosse in Northwestern Saskatchewan since 2006 and have been working with the near by English River First Nation Since 2012.  My dissertation, Nations Transformed?: Continuity and Change in Aboriginal Histories of Catholicism in Northwestern Saskatchewanexplores the intersections of religious and political expression during the twentieth century in Ile-a-la-Crosse and English River. I posit that by creating a space to first historicize and then more broadly consider Aboriginal Christianity within Indigenous community life we can see what has been largely regarded as a colonial imposition in a new light that illuminates key features of the indigenous response to colonial induced change. Other research interests include reflecting on the practice of oral history and community engaged work, Aboriginal music and dance, place based studies, Metis history, northwest coast history, and Indigeneity. This year I am excited to teach a new community-based history course, history 498.3 “Filming History:  Oral History, Digital Storytelling, and the Social History of Recent Prairie Immigration.”

Fields of Expertise: I completed my major comprehensive reading field in Comparative Aboriginal History, and minor fields in Post-Confederation Canadian History and American History 1865- Present.

Publications (Select): 

“Relationships: A Study of Memory, Change, and Identity at a Place Called I:yem,” University of the Fraser Valley Research Review, Online Journal (April 2009).

With MacKinley Darlington, “Encountering Mary: Apparitions, Roadside Shrines, and the Métis of the Westside,” Saskatchewan History. 61(2), Fall 2009.


“A Subversive Sincerity:  Christian Gatherings and Political Opportunities in S’olh Téméxw,” in Mixed Blessings, Edited by Tolly Bradford and Chelsea Horton, UBC Press. (Forthcoming)

Conference Presentations (Select): 

“Region, Culture, and Community: Situating the Cree, the Métis, and the Dene in Northwestern Saskatchewan.” Conference of the Western History Association, Tucson Arizona, October 2013.

“Taking Students to the River: Negotiating Community and Academic ways of Teaching and Learning.”American Society for Ethnohistory, New Orleans Louisiana, 11-14 September 2013.

Conflicted Conflict: Christianity and the Métis in Northwestern Saskatchewan, Canadian Historical Association Annual Meeting, Wilfrid Laurier University and the University of Waterloo, 28-30 May 2012.


Glenn Iceton

Glenn Iceton


Dissertation Title: Defining Space: How History has Shaped and Informed Notions of Kaska Land Use and Occupancy 

Supervisor: Dr. Bill Waiser

Dissertation Description: My dissertation examines land claims in the Yukon and northern British Columbia from an environmental historical perspective.  Focusing on the Kaska Nation, who have not settled land claims, I consider the ways in which conceptions of the Kaska’s historical land use and occupancy as well as the significance of place is shaped through the current legal framework of Aboriginal rights and title and contemporary environmental politics. My dissertation will also take into account the historical circumstances in which the evidence of land use has been produced and the implications of this production of knowledge for current conceptions of land use and occupancy. 

Fields of Expertise: Environmental History; Aboriginal History; Northern Canadian History; Fur Trade History; Aboriginal Rights and Title.


Iceton, Glenn. "Law of the Yukon: A History of the Mounted Police in the Yukon (book review)." The Northern Review (forthcoming). 

Iceton, Glenn. "The Last Patrol: Following the Trail of the Royal Northwest Mounted Police's Legendary Lost Patrol (book review)." The Northern Review (forthcoming).

Iceton, Glenn. “Missionaries.” In Herschel Island Qikiqtaryuk: A Natural and Cultural History of Yukon’s Arctic Island. Ed. Christopher R. Burn. Whitehorse: Wildlife Management Advisory Council (North Slope), 2012.

Iceton, Glenn. “The Kandik Map (book review).” Northern Review 34 (Fall 2011): 100-102.

Conference Presentations (Select)

“Land Use, Dispossession, and Repossession: Ethnography, State Knowledge, and Aboriginal Title Along the Yukon-British Columbia Border,” Under Western Skies 3, Mount Royal University, Calgary, Alberta, September 2014.

“Buying Local: Changes in Athapaskan Material Culture and the Commodification of Wildlife in the Northern Yukon, 1860-1910,” Place and Replace: A Joint Meeting of Western Canadian Studies and St. John’s College Prairies Conference, Winnipeg, Manitoba. Sept. 2010.

“On the Other Side of the ‘Long Chalk’: Intersecting Fur Trading Dynasties in Russian America,” Fur Trade and Metis History: Patterns of Ethnogenisis mini-conference at the Annual Conference of the Canadian Historical Association, Carlton University, Ottawa, Ontario. May 2009.



Anne Janhunen


Dissertation Title: In progress.

Supervisor: Dr. Keith Carlson

Dissertation Description: My dissertation explores late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century land use in Ontario as it relates to Indigenous communities. Using case studies focused on agriculture, logging, and park creation, I examine how Indigenous communities and individuals have alternately drawn on, and adjusted, practices and livelihoods as a result of government- and industry-driven local and regional changes in land use.

Fields of Expertise: Environmental History; Ethnohistory; Oral History; Microhistory

Conference Presentations (Select):

“‘If the Land is Worth the Trouble’: Colonial Imaginaries and Land Use in Early Twentieth Century Stó:lō Territory” Under Western Skies Conference, Mount Royal University, Calgary, Sept. 2014.

“Twentieth Century Land Use in S’olh Temexw, Stó:lō Territory” NiCHE Prairie Environmental History Network Workshop, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Apr. 2014.

“Deconstructing Colonial Narratives in Canadian History Textbooks” Indigenous knowledge and education session, VII ETMU Days, Negotiating the Local and Global: Values, Citizenship, and EducationOulu, Finland, Oct. 2010.


David Kim-CraggDavid Kim-Cragg

PhD student

Supervisors: Drs. Keith Carlson and Mirela David

Dissertation Description: David is researching the Korean-Canadian church partnership during the South Korean democratization movement of the 1970s.

Fields of Expertise: Aboriginal History, East Asian Modern History, Canadian Church Mission History, Canadian History, Korean Modern History


Laura Larson

Laura Larsen


Dissertation Title:  “‘Why should I sell your wheat?’  Trudeau government agricultural transportation policy”

Supervisor: Dr. Bill Waiser

Dissertation Description: The 1968 election of the Pierre Trudeau-led Liberal government began a process that altered the fundamental structure of prairie agriculture. My dissertation examines the 1977 Hall and Snavely Commissions on grain handling and transportation. These commissions, their recommendations and consequences are placed in the wider context of the Crowsnest Pass Freight Rate Agreement debates. Part of my examination uses historical GIS to integrate data from the thousands of elevator delivery points that once marked prairie communities with other statistical sources. I seek to give a more nuanced understanding of policies that have influenced western Canadian agriculture from a community to a national level.

Fields of Expertise:  Western Canadian History; Prairie Agricultural History; Environmental History; Transportation


“Old Conflicts in a New Century: The problems of prairie grain transportation,” in, April 15, 2014

Conference Presentations (Select):

“How to end the Holy Crow: An Examination of Grain  Freight Rate Policy up to the end of the Hall and Snavely Commissions,” The West Before (and After) the West: Western Canadian Studies, University of Manitoba, 5 November 2015

“As the Crow Flew: Examining Trudeau-Era Rail Rationalization Policy Through HGIS,” Canadian Historical Association Annual Meeting 2015,  University of Ottawa, 2 June 2015

“Country Elevators and Branch Lines: Grain Transportation Policy in the Trudeau-Era,” 40th Annual British Association for Canadian Studies, British Library Conference Centre, St Pancras, London, 25 April 2015

Jason LockeJason Locke


Thesis Title: Tentatively Called "The Occupied City: Collaboration, Resistance, and Accomodation in Eighteenth-Century North America"

Supervisor: Dr. Robert Englebert

Thesis Description: In the course of warfare in the eighteenth century, the British took and held, sometimes for years, many cities and forts. By focusing upon two French towns (Detroit and Quebec), two American towns (Philadelphia and New York) and two Spanish towns (St. Augustine and Havana) I am examining patterns of resistance, accommodation, and collaboration in those places by locals to the arrival of the British.

Fields of Expertise: Latin American History (Modern and Colonial), Colonial North America, Indigenous History, British Imperial History, US History, Cultural History

Conference Presentations (Select):

"City as Symbol in Nahua and Spanish Thought" (2008) "John Bull in Buenos Aires." (2009)

MacMartinDavid MacMartin


Dissertation Title: “The Honour of the Crown and Ontario’s Northern Treaties: A History of the ‘Taken Up’ Clause”

Supervisor: Dr. Kathryn Magee Labelle

Dissertation Description: My doctoral research examines the Honour of the Crown concept and the negotiation and administration of Ontario’s northern treaties, with particular focus on the history and evolution of the “taken up” clause component of these treaties. The research begins with an exploration of the concept, as reflected in the Sir William Johnson model for relations between the British and the Six Nations Iroquois people in the Mohawk Valley of the Province of New York in the eighteenth century and subsequently in the Royal Proclamation of October 7, 1763. From this foundation, historical case study analyses to illustrate the history of the “taken up” clause in Ontario’s northern treaties - the Robinson Huron and Superior Treaties of 1850, the Northwest Angle Treaty, No. 3, and the James Bay Treaty No. 9, are being prepared, focusing on the key government people, decision-making structures and processes and policy aims involved when the “taken up” clause was first developed and inserted into treaty agreements, starting with the Robinson Treaties of 1850 and Treaty 3 in 1873. The intentions of the Province of Canada and subsequently the Dominion of Canada government decision makers that led to the insertion of this clause in these treaties in the first instance will be ascertained and explained. An assessment will be made of whether the initial development and subsequent implementation of the “taken up” clause, in practice, has reflected the Honour of the Crown paradigm originally established to inform treaty making with First Nations in British North America.

Fields of Expertise: Indigenous People-Newcomer Relations North America; the History of the Law of Treaties with Indigenous Peoples; and History and Theory.

Conference Presentations:

"D. George MacMartin: Who was he and why, how and by whom was he appointed as Ontario's Treaty 9 Commissioner in 1905?", 17th Rupert's Land Colloquium, University of Winnipeg, Winnipeg, Manitoba, May 20, 2016.

"Historical and Legal Antecedents of Ontario's Northern Ontario Treaties Role and the Current Significance of Ontario's Authority Under the 'Taken Up' Clause," 20th Annual New Frontiers in Graduate History Conference, York University, Toronto, Ontario, February 19, 2016.

“Daniel George MacMartin and His 1905 Treaty 9 Diary: A Case Study in Source Triangulation and the Accommodation of Conflicting Influences, Interests and Cultures.” 2015 McGill-Queen’s Graduate History Conference, Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario, March 6, 2015.

“Treaty Rights and Economic Development: From Treaty Commissioners to Neil Young and the PMO…and the Courts.” 16th Rupert’s Land Colloquium, University of Alberta, Edmonton, AB, May 14, 2014.


MarshChris Marsh


Supervisor: Geoff Cunfer

Dissertation Description: My thesis examines a decade of intertribal warfare in the borderlands of northern Montana and southern Alberta in the 1880s involving the Kainai (Blood Tribe) of the Blackfoot Confederacy and the A’aninin (Gros Ventre) and Nakoda (Assiniboine) of Fort Belknap. It explored the influence of environmental alteration in the continuity of equestrian and warrior culture as well as the interaction between the Canadian federal state-in the form of the North West Mounted Police and the local level of the Department of Indian Affairs (DIA)- and First Nations peoples in the early reserve era (1876-1900).

Fields of Expertise:  U.S.- Canada border, Great Plains, Western History 

OsmondColin Murray Osmond


Supervisor: Keith Thor Carlson

Dissertation Title: “Shared Spaces, Tangled Treaties: A History of Coast Salish-Settler Relations in British Columbia”

Dissertation DescriptionShared Spaces, Tangled Treaties examines the changing social and racial conceptions of identity that developed between Coast Salish people and settler societies in the twentieth century. By analyzing the many ways that the arrival of Europeans, the formation of a settler society, and the introduction of a wage labour economy changed indigenous notions of class and identity, I construct a framework that re-situates our understanding of the relationships that developed between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people in British Columbia. This dissertation contributes to a growing body of scholarship that recognizes that meaningful reconciliation between indigenous and settler society can be best realized by developing respect. The best, if not the only, way to create these cross-cultural understandings is by examining the historical contexts that led to their creation.

Osmond, Colin. Giant Trees, Iron Men: Masculinity and Colonialism in Coast Salish Loggers’ Identity. Master’s Thesis. Saskatoon: University of Saskatchewan, 2016.

Carlson, Keith; Osmond, Colin; Hutton, Norman. The Lodge We Built: 100 Years of Freemasonry in Powell River. Powell River: Triune Lodge, 2016.

Osmond, Colin. “I Was Born a Logger: Stó:lō Identities Forged in the Forest.” Through Students’ Eyes: Stó:lō Ethnohistory Field School Collection, eds. Keith Carlson and John S. Lutz. Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 2016 (Forthcoming).

Carlson, Keith, and Colin Osmond. “Clash at Clayoquot: Manifestations of Colonial and Indigenous Power in Pre Settler Colonial Canada (The Overlooked 1792 Journals of David Lamb and Jacob Herrick).” Western Historical Quarterly (Summer 2017) (Forthcoming).

Conference Presentations (Select):
“From the Archives to the Field: A Student’s Experiences in Ethnohistory.” Society for Applied Anthropology, Vancouver, April 2016.

“Giant Trees, Iron Men: Coast Salish Loggers and Masculinity.” American Society for Environmental History, Seattle, WA, March 2016.

“Turned Away from Tees'kwat: Powell River's Industrial Landscape, from a Tla'amin Perspective.” Qualicum History Conference, Qualicum Beach, BC, January 2016.

“Turned Away From Tees’kwat: Reimagining Space and Identity from a Tla’amin Perspective.” American Society for Ethnohistory Annual Conference, Las Vegas, NV, November 2015.

PattonKarissa Patton


Supervisor: Dr. Erika Dyck

Fields of Expertise: History of Reproductive and Sexual Health, Native-Newcomer Relations, Gender History, Oral History, Women’s History, Canadian History, Albertan History

Publications (Select):

(Forthcoming) Patton, Karissa. Review of Tending the Student Body: Youth, Health, and the Modern University by Catherine Gidney. Ontario History, Spring 2016.

Patton, Karissa, Brittney Adams, Anastasia Sereda, Jesse Couture, and Kristine Alexander. “Feminist Borders and Boundaries of Southern Alberta: Grad Student Activists’ Experiences.” The Feminist Word(Online Publication). Published by The Canadian Research Institute for the Advancement of Women vol. 1 no.1 (Winter 2015).

Patton, Karissa. “Parental Rights, Reproductive Rights, and Youth’s Sexuality in Alberta, Then and Now.” (part of the special series of posts in preparation for the Abortion: The UnfinishedRevolution conference in August, 2014) July 25, 2014.

Patton, Karissa. “Risk taking or Reproductive Oppression?: The CCBR’s Mimicry of the Abortion Caravan to Disguise their Anti-Choice Politics and Ideology” (part of the special series of posts in commemoration of the 45th anniversary of the Abortion Caravan) May 26, 2015.

Conference Presentations (Select): 

““‘The Other Alberta:” Activist Reactions to Alberta’s Conservatism,” Canadian Historical Association Annual Meeting Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, May 30, 2016.

“As a Parent: Parental Perceptions of Authority on the Issues of Birth Control, Abortion, and Premarital Sex in 1974 Lethbridge,” Abortion: The Unfinished Revolution, The University of Prince Edward Island, Charlottetown, PEI, August 8, 2014.

“Community, Contraception, and Controversy: A History of the Lethbridge Birth Control and Information Centre,” Canadian Historical Association Annual Meeting Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, Brock University, Saint Catherine’s, ON, May 28, 2014.


Fedir Razumenko


Dissertation Title: Medical Experimentation with Humans and its Ethical-Legal Aspects in Canada, 1950-1998”

Supervisor: Erika Dyck and Larry Stewart

Dissertation Description: My research charts the development of new practices in clinical settings wherein anti-cancer experimental therapy modalities were devised, evaluated, and eventually regulated. The innovative cancer research is viewed in the study as a constructive socio-cultural process through which norms, values, and goals of the community are reflected.


“The Nexus of Canadian Cancer Research: from the Commissions to the Institute, 1929-1951”, presented at the Canadian Society for the History of Medicine (CSHM/SCHM) annual meeting in Calgary (AB), 28-30 May 2016.

“A Life Cycle of the Medical Substance: DMPA’s Social Transitions From Laboratories to Hospitals and Mental Institutions in Canada since late 1950s”, presented at the 5th MOMS History of Medicine Conference, Northern Ontario School of Medicine, Lakehead University, Thunder Bay, October 2-3, 2015.

“A Level Playing Field for Ontario and Saskatchewan: cancer therapy research with human subjects and its ethics in the 1960s,” presented at the 24th Annual History of Medicine Days Conference, University of Calgary, March 6-7th, 2015.

“Normality before Morality: Canadian innovation in cancer treatment human research and its ethical grounding in the 1960s,” presented at the Taft Graduate Humanities Conference HumanitiesNOW, University of Cincinnati (OH), March 4-5th, 2015.


“The First Knowledge Economy: Human Capital and the European Economy, 1750-1850” (Review of Margaret C. Jacob’s Book), Canadian Journal of History, Autumn 2016, Vol. 51(2), 365-367. 


Erin Spinney


Dissertation Title: Military Nursing in the British Empire c. 1763-1820 

Supervisor: Dr. Lisa Smith/Dr. Matthew Neufeld

Dissertation Description: To explore how and why military nursing was established as a female domain from the late eighteenth century, I examine five key issues: the hospital as a household, nursing and imperialism, health through hygiene, the changing status of military nurses, and the relationship of the Napoleonic nurse to the new medicine. My research considers how race, class, and gender were intertwined in shaping the medical system and the process of selecting nurses, and draws on many archival sources including letters, medical treatises, personal papers, regulation books and hospital pay lists. 

Fields of Expertise: Early Modern Britain; Medical History; Nursing History; Military History; Atlantic World.

Conference Presentations (Select):

“Urban Workers, Household Women: Nurses at Plymouth Naval Hospital 1778-1800,” European Association for Urban History, Helsinki, Finland, 24-27 August 2016. 
“Inside the Ward: Everyday Experiences at the Intersection of Medicine and Domesticity in Eighteenth-Century British Naval Hospitals,” Society for the Social History of Medicine, Canterbury, England, 7-10 July 2016.
“Regulators of an Internal Environment: British Naval Nursing in Late-Eighteenth Century Hospitals,”
American Society for Environmental History, Seattle, WA, 30 March- 2 April, 2016.


Erin Spinney. "Colonial Caring: A history of colonial and post-colonial nursing, Edited by Helen Sweet and Sue Hawkins." Nursing History Review 25(1) (2017): 170-172.

Review of Forrest, Alan, Waterloo. H-War, H-Net Reviews. October 2015.



Matt Todd


Supervisor: Dr. Geoff Cunfer

Dissertation Description: 

His current project examines land-use, perception, changing technology, geography, and climate fluctuation on the Great Plains during the 19th and early 20th century.

Fields of Expertise: Environmental History; Borderlands History; Frontier History; and geo-spatial analysis using HGIS.


Cheryl Troupe

PhD Student

Supervisor: Dr. Geoff Cunfer

Dissertation Description: She began the Ph.D. program in History in 2012, exploring Métis women’s “road allowance” gardening in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

MA Students

BirdJohn Bird


Supervisor: Keith Carlson 

Dissertation Description: My dissertation focuses on the earliest First Nations writers in English, specifically the 19th-century celebrity George Copway.

Damian Braun


Thesis Title: The Hudson's Bay Company During the American Revolution

Supervisor: Dr. Robert Englebert

Dissertation Description: Three Hudson's Bay Company posts became the targets of French warships at the end of the American Revolutionary War. Why? The war was nearly over and the French and British were no longer fur trade competitors. What can the HBC posts on the Bay tell us about the nature of the British Empire at a point of crisis in its existence in America? What can the French attack on these HBC posts during the American Revolutionary War say about the British Empire at that time? The significance of this work is the possibility of redefining The HBC's role in the British Empire.


clarkChelsea Clark


Supervisor: Lisa Smith/Matthew Neufeld 

CupidNathan Cupid


Thesis Title: The Empire Knows They Smuggle: New France and the Illicit Fur Trade, 1663-1740

Supervisor: Dr. Robert Englebert

Thesis Description: My thesis examines coureurs de bois and the illicit fur trade in New France, and asks how illicit trade affected the way colonial officials governed New France between 1663 and 1740. It investigates connections between the illicit fur trade and governance, and considers how illicit commercial activity affects state or imperial decision-making.

Fields of Expertise: New France, the North American fur trade, Colonial governance, Coureurs de bois


GibbonsKarrie Gibbons


Supervisor: Valerie Korinek 

GiraldoMartin Giraldo


Supervisor: Geoff Cunfer

Thesis Description: My research is aimed to trace the configuration process of an agricultural landscape in the Cauca valley, southwest Colombia during the second half of 19th century, looking for the land-use changes during the transition from a traditional to an industrial agriculture.

Fields of Expertise: Latin American History, Colombian History, History of colonialism, Environmental History

Conference Presentations (Select):

Mapping the agricultural past of Cundiboyacense high plateau, Colombian north-eastern Andes Mountains”. International Conference on History of Cartography (ICHC), Antwerp, Belgium, July 2015​


CaseyCassandra Koenig


Thesis Title: The Madams, Inmates, and Frequenters: Prostitution Law on the Prairies from 1910-1930.

Supervisor: Lesley Biggs

Thesis Description: A focus on the interpretation and implementation of prostitution law in Alberta and Saskatchewan from 1910-1930. With the intent of looking at the monthly returns of police magistrates from Calgary, Edmonton, Lethbridge, Saskatoon, Regina, and Moosejaw, the aim is to discover differences in sentencing trends and the influence of social reform on prostitution law in the prairies.

Fields of Expertise: Western Canadian History, Gender History

Conference Presentations (Select):

British Association of Canadian Studies Conference, British Library, London, England. Paper and Presentation: “Bawdy Behaviour: The Madam, the Inmates, and the Gents in Calgary and Edmonton (1916-1919)” April 2015


IrynaIryna Kozina


Thesis Title: Prickly Questions: Redemptorists’/Catholic response to sociocultural changes in 1960s. Ukrainian Case in Yorkton, Saskatchewan (c. 1960s-1980s)

Supervisor: Dr Natalia Khanenko-Friesen

Dissertation Description: In my thesis, I will determine the main messages delivered by the Ukrainian Catholic Church in Yorkton through the Redemptorists’ Press publications in the 1960s-1980s. I will also analyse the Redemptorists’ response to societal developments in the Canadian Prairies beginning from the 1960s, as well as the main challenges and reactions of the Yorkton Ukrainian community to those changes. I aim to expose whether and to what extent the Yorkton Ukrainian community was affected by the widespread societal developments of the 1960s, especially those that confronted traditional religious values.

Fields of Expertise: Ukrainian Studies / Diaspora Studies / Community Engagement / Social History of Religion / Oral History


LittleTarisa Little


Thesis  Title: “There are no shortcuts”: The Long Road to Treaty 7 Education
Supervisor: Dr. Kathryn Labelle
Thesis Description: On a cool September morning in 1877, Treaty 7 was signed on the rocky banks of the Bow River at Blackfoot Crossing. The treaty was desired by government officials and Indigenous Nations. For as long as the rivers flow and the sun shines, Indigenous communities had agreed to share the impressive landscape of what is now southern Alberta. However, not unlike the rocky banks, the treaty promises were unequal as the oral promise of education made did not coincide with the final written treaty—leaving a devastating legacy.

Fields of Expertise: Treaty history, Residential School history, Education, Indigenous history, Canadian history, Western Canadian history, Colonial history, Native-Newcomer Relations, Ethnohistory

“’To Instruct the Children of Said Indians as to Her Government of Canada May Seem Advisable’: The Implementation of Treaty 7 Education Promises from 1877 to 1923.” In Mount Royal University Humanities Review 3:1 (Sept. 2015).

Conference Presentations (Select): 
 “Treaty 7 Education: Promises, Perspectives, and Legacy from 1877-2015.” Strategies of Critique 2016: Human:Race | Reconceptualizing the Human in Difficult Times, York University, April 2016.

“Treaty 7: The Foundation for a Legacy of Unmet Education Promises.” International Graduate Historical Studies Conference, Central Michigan University, April 2016. 

“’There are no shortcuts’: The Long Road to Treaty 7 Education.” McGill-Queens Graduate Conference in History, McGill University, February 2016. Accepted but unable to attend.

Michael LyonsMichael Lyons


Thesis Title: Officials, Mortality, and Change in a Fourteenth-Century Manor Court: Wakefield, 1340-1360

Supervisor: Dr. Sharon Wright

Thesis Description: I am examining how the loss of elder officials in the manorial court of the West Yorkshire Wakefield manor during the bubonic plague affected the power dynamics and social relationships in the towns and villages of the manor in the late fourteenth-century. This thesis argues that the loss of men during the Plague of 1348, who held positions of authority as jurors and whose responsibility it was to help oversee their communities, transformed the socio-legal landscape of Wakefield; thus, changing the nature of juror selection which altered the composition of the social relationships and interactions in the villages of the manor in the post-plague era.

Fields of Expertise: Medieval England, Medieval English Legal and Social History, The Great Mortality, Medieval English Peasants, Manorial Society

Conference Presentations (Select):
Moving From Earthly Riches to the Splendor of Heaven: The Roman Concept of Humanitas as Represented in Cicero’s De Officiis and Augustine’s De Civitate Dei” Michael Swan Honours Colloquium (Jan. 2015)

Tyler ReimerTyler Reimer


Thesis title: Secret Books, Secret Magic: A comparison of printed and manuscript books of secrets in sixteenth-century England

Supervisor: Dr. Frank Klaassen

Thesis Description: I will be looking at the differences between printed and manuscript books of secrets in sixteenth-century England. Focusing on the differences in desires and ingredients that appear in books of secrets and the structuring of authority in the two traditions.


rogersDavis Rogers


Supervisor: Keith Carlson 

Thesis Description: My research explores the evolving relationship between Native Americans and environmental conservation within the United States. It focuses on the recent reintroduction of wolves in Idaho and the historic role the Nez Perce (Niimíipu) peoples played in this process. 

David Seibel


Thesis Title: Upper Louisiana and St. Louis under Spanish Authority

Supervisor: Dr. Robert Englebert

Thesis Description: My research investigates the interactions of French people in Upper Louisiana with Spanish imperial authority from 1766 to 1793. I am examining how French colonial peoples accepted and contested imperial regime change and I am seeking to understand the limits of imperial authority on the frontier. My research is centered on the French inhabitants’ relationship with the Spanish state, not the Spanish government’s perspective.


Brandon SmithBrandon Smith


Thesis Title: Baltic Ambitions: The Diplomatic Role of the Teutonic Order in the Conflict between Emperor, Frederick II, and the Papacy, 1220-1250

Supervisor: Dr. Sharon Wright

Fields of Expertise: The Holy Roman Empire, Medieval History, German History, Crusades Studies, The Baltic Crusade

Thesis Description: I am examining the Baltic Crusade in the context of the western European conflict between the Papacy and the Holy Roman Empire during the reign of Frederick II von Hohenstaufen. By studying correspondences between the Empire, the Papacy, and the Teutonic Order, this thesis argues that the Teutonic Order was able to navigate this conflict in such a way that they were able to receive benefits from both institutions that normally would not have been granted, while maintaining a policy of neutrality in the conflict between the Papacy and the Empire.

Conference Presentation (Select):

"The Evolving Sexuality of Edward II of England: A Look at the Historiography of the Study of Edward II’s Sexuality," The Michael Swan Honours Colloquium (Jan. 2015)


Mitchell J. Smith


Thesis Title: Alaskan Orthodoxy: Alaskan Native Missionaries in the 19th Century

Supervisor: Dr. Keith Carlson 

Thesis Description: In the 19th Century, lay Orthodox missionaries from the Aleutian Islands of Alaska preceded formal Russian Orthodox missionaries in baptizing inland Alaskan Native groups as Christians. In the interior, as on the coast, Alaskan Native Christianity melded parts of Native spirituality and culture with Orthodox Christian theology and liturgy from eastern Europe. Using multiple sources, including Oral interviews, I will write the history of Alaskan Orthodoxy from an Alaskan Native perspective.

Fields of Expertise: Native-Newcomer Relations, Frontier History, History of Christianity


AngeliqueAngélique Tardivel


Thesis title: Q’wәld’ali, cooking fire: the impact of changing definitions of family and concepts of territoriality among Stó:lō from 1860 to 1900.

Supervisor: Dr. Keith Carlson

Thesis Description: As part of Dr. Carlson's project, which examines the gendered forces that shaped Coast Salish notions of territoriality over time, I will examine specific legendary narratives in myth-age legends (sxwoxwiyam) featuring prominent female protagonists to illustrate how the impact of government and missionaries’ efforts to eradicate polygamy affected specific Stó:lō or Sliammon communities. I will attempt to decipher more about the feminine perspective of territoriality in Coast Salish culture and about female relationships to place within inter-tribal space.

Fields of expertise: Tsimshian and Coast Salish kinship systems and oral tradition, Canadian Indigenous History, Ethnohistory, British Columbia History, Mandarin, Immigration issues in Canada.

Conference presentation:

“Volcano-Woman, the Frog and the Cormorant Hat: Matrilineality in Tsimshian Adaawk – the story of Asdilthda and Deaksh”. CASCA Conference paper for panel 'Indigenous Issues: Part 2', University of Laval. 24 pp, May 13th, 2015.

Courtney TuckCourtney Tuck-Goetz


Thesis Title: Perceptions of Female Gladiators of the Imperial Period in Ancient Rome​

Supervisor: Dr. Angela Kalinowski

Thesis Description: My master’s thesis project will discuss the participation of female gladiators in ancient Roman spectacle. It aims to ascertain the way these women were perceived by their ancient Roman contemporaries during the Imperial Period. I will be utilizing ancient sources both material and literary in nature. I will examine the evidence through the lenses of gender, class and ethnicity. The outcome of this study will be the creation of a picture of the way female gladiators were perceived as ‘other’ and what impact those perceptions would have had in shaping their overall experience as women in Roman spectacle.

Fields of Expertise: Ancient Roman Spectacle, Ancient Material Culture & Sources, Ancient Roman Social History