Master’s program graduates go three for three in book publishing


Historical Record

Research that three Western Carolina alumni started as students in the history department’s graduate program developed into three recently published books.

Kevin T. Barksdale MA ’99 authored “The Lost State of Franklin: America’s First Secession,” published by the University Press of Kentucky. Barksdale is an assistant professor at Marshall University.

Chris Manganiello MA ’03 co-edited with Paul Sutter “Environmental History and the American South: A Reader,” published by the University of Georgia Press. Manganiello is a research fellow at the Smithsonian Institution.

Bruce E. Stewart MA ’01 edited “King of the Moonshiners: Lewis R. Redmond in Fact and Fiction,” published by the University of Tennessee Press. Stewart is an assistant professor at Appalachian State University.

“This indicates the high level of work that our graduate students are doing and reinforces the quality of the training they received at WCU,” said Richard Starnes ’92 MA ’94, head of the history department.

Starnes himself recently received an honor. In fall 2008, he was appointed to the North Carolina Historical Commission, which establishes criteria for state historic properties, approves state archives and museum collection policies, reviews state museum exhibit plans, and acts as a resource for legislative committees considering historical or historic preservation issues.

“History remains a powerful force in our society, and I look forward to contributing to how our state preserves, commemorates and remembers our past,” said Starnes, who specializes in Southern social and economic history. Starnes is writing a book about William Alexander Graham, who served as a U.S. senator, North Carolina governor and U.S. secretary of the Navy in the 19th century.