Dr. Andrew L. Slap

Dr. Slap


(423) 439-6801
Rogers-Stout 207


  B.A., 1994, University of Massachusetts at Amherst
  Ph.D., 2002, The Pennsylvania State University 

About Dr. Slap:

Andrew L. Slap is an Associate Professor of History at East Tennessee State University.  His research and teaching focuses on nineteenth- century American history, particularly a broadly conceived Civil War era.  He has published books on Reconstruction politics and Appalachia after the Civil War, and is currently working on a book project about African American communities in nineteenth-century Memphis.   He is also co-editing two collections of essays, one on the North during the Civil War era and the other on the urban South during the Civil War era.  In addition to teaching a wide variety of courses -- including ones on the Civil War, comparative slavery,and Appalachia -- he regularly works with MA students.

Dr. Slap is also the series editor for two separate book series: Reconstructing America, Fordham University Press and The North's Civil War, Fordham University Press                                                                                         

Areas of Academic Specialty Websites of Interest
19th Century U.S.
Civil War Era
African American History
Political History
Social History
Appalachian History
 Dr. Slap's Personal Faculty Webpage



Selected Publications:



In the Election of 1872 the conflict between President U. S. Grant and Horace Greeley has been typically understood as a battle for the soul of the ruling Republican Party. In this innovative study, Andrew Slap arguesforcefully that the campaign was more than a narrow struggle between Party elites and a class-based radical reform movement.

The election, he demonstrates, had broad consequences: in their opposition to widespread Federal corruption, Greeley Republicans unintentionally doomed Reconstruction of any kind, even as they lost the election. Based on close readings of newspapers, party documents, and other primary sources, Slap confronts one of the major questions in American political history: How, and why, did Reconstruction come to an end? His focus on the unintended consequences of Liberal Republican politics is a provocative contribution to this important debate.


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While most of the fighting took place in the South, the Civil War profoundly affected the North. As farm boys became soldiers and marched off to battle, social, economic, and political changes transformed northern society. In the generations following the conflict, historians tried to understand and explain the North's Civil War experience. Many historical explanations became taken for granted, such as that the Union Army was ideologically Republican, northern Democrats were disloyal, and German Americans were lousy soldiers. Now in   this eye-opening collection of  eleven stimulating essays, new and important information is unearthed that solidly challenges the old historical arguments.

  The essays in  This Distracted and Anarchical People  range widely throughout the history of the Civil War North, using new methods and sources to reexamine old theories and discover new aspects of the nation's greatest conflict. Many of these issues are just as important today as they were a century and a half ago. What were the   extent and limits of wartime dissent in the North? How could a president most effectively present himself to the public? Can the savagery of war ever be tamed? How did African Americans create and maintain their families?

This Distracted and Anarchical People  highlights the newest scholarship on a diverse array of topics, bringing fresh insight to bear on some of the most important topics in history today--such as the democratic press in the antebellum North, peace movements, the Union Army and the elections of 1864, Liberia and the U.S. Civil War, and African American veterans and marriage practices after Emancipation.


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 Families, communities, and the nation itself were irretrievably altered by the Civil War and the subsequent societal transformations of the nineteenth century. The repercussions of the war incited a broad range of unique problems in Appalachia, including political dynamics, racial prejudices, and the regional economy.

  Andrew L. Slap's anthology Reconstructing Appalachia reveals life in Appalachia after the ravages of the Civil War, an unexplored area that has left a void in historical literature. Addressing a gap in the chronicles of our nation, this vital collection explores little-known aspects of history with a particular focus on the Reconstruction and post-Reconstruction periods. Acclaimed scholars John C. Inscoe, Gordon B. McKinney, and Ken Fones-Wolf are joined   by up-and-comers like Mary Ella Engel, Anne E. Marshall, and Kyle Osborn in a unique volume of essays investigating postwar Appalachia with clarity and precision.

  Featuring a broad geographic focus, these compelling essays cover postwar events in Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania. This approach provides an intimate portrait of Appalachia as a diverse collection of communities where the values of place and family are of crucial importance.Highlighting a wide array of topics including racial reconciliation, tension between former Unionists and Confederates, the evolution of post--Civil War memory, and altered perceptions of race, gender, and economic status, Reconstructing Appalachia is a timely and essential study of a region rich in heritage and tradition.


Articles and Essays:

“‘No regular marriage’: African American Veterans and Marriage Practices during Reconstruction,” in This Distracted and Anarchical People: New Answers for Old Questions about the Civil War Era North. Editors Andrew L. Slap and Michael T. Smith. New York: Fordham University Press, 2012 

“The Loyal Deserters: African American Deserters and Community in Civil War Memphis,” in Weirding the War: Stories from the Civil War War’s Ragged Edges. Editor Stephen Berry. Athens, Georgia: University of Georgia Press (Fall 2011). 

“A New Frontier: Historians, Appalachian History, and the Aftermath of the Civil War,” in Reconstructing Appalachia: The Civil War’s Aftermath. Editor Andrew L. Slap. Lexington, Kentucky: University Press of Kentucky (Spring 2010).

“‘The Strong Arm of the Military Power of the United States’:  The Chicago Fire, the Constitution, and Reconstruction,” Civil War History, 47 (June 2001): 146-63. 

“The Spirit of ‘76:  The Reconstruction of History in the Redemption of South Carolina,” The Historian ,63 (Summer 2001): 769-86.