About Me

As a historian and historical archaeologist, I have the best of both worlds: studying the past through documentary records and material remains. I have conducted research at some of the world’s leading archives, including the British Library, Oxford and Cambridge Universities, and the National Archives in London, and studied under two of the most influential British seventeenth-century historians, Conrad Russell and John Miller. I have also surveyed over a hundred castles, handled artifacts from pre-history to WWII, excavated sites as diverse as a high-status medieval building and an East Texas slave plantation, and recorded metal finds from an English Civil War battlefield. After six years in the British museum sector, I am also familiar with a range of historical periods beyond my expertise, including Roman, Anglo-Saxon, Viking, and Medieval Britain. Somewhat more unusually, I have also acquired a range of knowledge about the destruction of historic buildings in the past; this is based on extensive consultation with structural and explosives engineers, gunpowder experts, carpenters, stonemasons, quantity surveyors, and metalsmiths. The result of this multi-disciplinary approach is a more nuanced understanding of the past, both as a historian and archaeologist, and a stronger passion for exploring and sharing it.

Degrees

  • King’s College London(2000), BA (History) [link]
  • University of York (2003), MA (Historical Archaeology) [link]
  • University of York (2008), PhD (Archaeology) [link]

Main Research Interests:

Early Modern and Modern Britain, English Civil War, destruction, castles in the post-medieval period, identity and power

Secondary Research Interests:

Prisons, Military History and Conflict/Battlefield Archaeology, African-American History, History of Science, death and burial, Public History