History Department

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We hope that you will find the history faculty to be engaging teachers, thoughtful scholars, and interesting individuals.

Click on a name below to read more about that faculty member.

Gary Scott Smith Gillis J. Harp  
Mark W. Graham Andrew Mitchell
Jason R. Edwards John A. Sparks  


Gary Scott Smith, Chair and Professor of History

  • Education:
    • BA, Psychology, Grove City College, 1972
      Office: HAL 300J             Email: gssmith@gcc.edu  Phone: 2016                  Box: 3039
    • M. Div. Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, 1977
    • M.A., American History, Johns Hopkins University, 1979
    • Ph.D., American History, Johns Hopkins University, 1981
  • Awards: 
    • Grove City College Professor of the Year, 2000 (inaugural award)
    • 2001 Pennsylvania Professor of the Year桾he Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education
  • Selected Publications:
    • Heaven in the American Imagination (Oxford University Press, 2011)
    • Numerous scholarly articles and chapters in edited books
    • Faith and the Presidency: Religion, Politics, and Public Policy from George Washington to George W. Bush (Oxford University Press 2006)
    • The Search for Social Salvation: Social Christianity and America, 1880-1925 (Lexington Books, 2000)
    • God and Politics: Four Views of the Reformation of Civil Government (Presbyterian and Reformed, 1989)
    • Editor, Building a Christian Worldview, Vol. 2: Cosmology, Society and Ethics (Presbyterian and Reformed, 1988)
    • Editor, Building a Christian Worldview, Vol. 1: God, Man and Knowledge (Presbyterian and Reformed, 1986)
    • The Seeds of Secularization: Calvinism and Culture in America, 1870-1915 (Eerdmans, 1985)
  • Specialization: American religious history, secularization, social change, religion and politics
  • Courses taught:
    • U.S. Survey I and U.S. Survey II
    • Minorities in American History
    • American Religious History
    • Sports in American History
    • Humanities 201 (Civilization and the Speculative Mind)
    • Humanities 302 (Modern Civilization in International Perspective)
    • Revisiting the Protestant Reformation
  • Organizations advised: Omicron Delta Kappa (a national academic and leadership honorary); New Life (a ministry to the residents at George Junior republic, a facility for juvenile delinquents)
  • Recreational interests: tennis, basketball, weight lifting, travel, hiking
  • Interesting historical fact: The Netherlands has the world抯 tallest average height for men𧚻.

Dr. Gillis J. Harp, Professor of History

Office: HAL 300A             Email: gjharp@gcc.edu   Phone: 2057                  Box: 3040
  • Education:  
    • B.A., History, Carleton University, 1979
    • M.A., American History, University of Virginia, 1980
    • Ph.D., American History, University of Virginia, 1986
  • Selected Publications: 
    • Traditional Dissent: The Reorientation of American Conservatism, 1865-1900," Modern Intellectual History (2008), 5:487-518

    • "Hofstadter's The Age of Reform and the Crucible of the Fifties," Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era 6:2 (April 2007)
    • "The Strange Death of Evangelical Episcopalianism," Anglican & Episcopal History 74:2 (2005): 180-206.
    • Brahmin Prophet: Phillips Brooks and the Path of Liberal Protestantism (Rowman & Littlefield, 2003).
    • "'We cannot spare you:' Phillips Brooks's Break with the Evangelical Party, 1859-1873," Church History 68:4 (December 1999): 930-953.
    • "Determinism or Democracy? The Marxisms of Eduard Bernstein and Sidney Hook, History of European Ideas 25 (1999):243-250.
    • "The Young Phillips Brooks: A Reassessment," Journal of Ecclesiastical History 49:4 (1998): 652-667.
    • Positivist Republic: Auguste Comte and the Reconstruction of American Liberalism, 1865-1920 (Penn State Press, 1995).
    • "Patrician Partisans: New York in the House of Representatives, 1789-1803," Canadian Journal of History 29 (1994): 479-500.
    • "Taylor, Calhoun, and the Decline of a Theory of Political Disharmony," Journal of the History of Ideas 46 (1985): 107-120
  • Courses taught:
    • British History to 1781
    • British History Since 1781
    • Colonial and Revolutionary America
    • The United States in the Nineteenth Century
    • The United States Since 1900
    • American Intellectual History
    • Historical Research
    • Humanities 101 (Civilization)
    • Humanities 302 (Modern Civilization in International Perspective)
  • Organizations advised: Canterbury Fellowship
  • Specialization: American intellectual and cultural history, especially nineteenth century
  • Recreational interests: American 搑oots music, vintage autosport
  • Interesting historical fact: The U.S. averaged approximately 35,000 industrial accidents per year between 1880 and 1900.  That totals more than the casualty figures for the Civil War.

Mark W. Graham, Associate Professor of History

Office: HAL 300K             Email:mwgraham@gcc.edu  Phone:3833                  Box: 3041
  • Education: 
    • Ph.D. Michigan State University, 2001
    • M.A. University of South Carolina, 1995
    • B.A. Bob Jones University, 1993
  • Books

     Ancient Empires: From Mesopotamia to the Rise of Islam, with Eric H. Cline (Cambridge University Press, 2011)

   News and Frontier Consciousness in the Late Roman Empire (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2006).

   Articles / Book Chapters / Book Reviews

     Review of The Seer in Ancient Greece by Michael Attyah Flower.  Berkeley: University of California Press, 2008, in The Historian 72.2 (2010): 468-469.

     揟he Phrygian Empire, 10,000 word article in The Encyclopedia of Empires of the World (New York: Facts on File Publishing, 2011).

     Review of The Hellenistic Settlements in Syria, the Red Sea Basin and North Africa by Getzel M. Cohen.  Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006, in The Historian 70.1 (2008): 93-94.

     揥all Decoration: Worked Stone, in Bir Ftouha:  A Pilgrimage Church Complex at Carthage.  Susan Stevens et al. eds. Portsmouth, RI: Journal of Roman Archaeology Supplementary Series 59 (2005), 379-397.

     揟omyris and 揟riaria  From Amazons to Fighter Pilots, ed. Reina Pennington.  Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2003.

     揇iocese in Encyclopedia of Greece and the Hellenic Tradition.  Graham Speake, ed. London: Fitzroy Dearborn, 2000, 482-484.

     Review of The Empress Theophano: Byzantium and the West at the turn of the first millennium  Ed. Adelbert Davids.  Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, Medieval Prosopography 17:1 (Spring 1996): 275-280.

     揗ommsen, Harnack, and the Prosopography of Late Antiquity, by Stefan Rebenich, translated from German by Mark W. Graham. Medieval Prosopography 17:1 (Spring 1996): 149-167.

     搾The Enchanter抯 Wand: Charles Darwin, The Beagle Voyage, and Foreign Missions, Journal of Religious History 31.2 (2007): 131-150.

  • Specialization: Late Antiquity, a field which includes the late Roman Empire, early Medieval Europe, the rise of Islam, and the early Byzantine Empire.   
  • Courses taught:
    • Humanities 101 (Civilization)
    • World History I, World History II
    • Ancient World, Medieval Europe
    • Modern Europe, Rise of Christianity
    • Byzantium and Islam, Ancient Historiography
    • Medieval Intellectual History, Latin I
  • Organizations advised: Phi Alpha Theta History Honorary, The Classics Society.
  • Recreational interests: Coin and antique collecting, international traveling (he and his wife have visited more than 20 countries), American roadtrips (he, his wife, and a one year old daughter once did a 9600 mile, six-week excursion) and reading books with his daughters (Hobbit and Greek myths told for children are the current favorites).
  • Interesting historical fact: In the thirteenth century the majority of the world抯 Christians lived outside of Western Europe, spread across the Middle East and Central Asia.  These Christians, largely forgotten after their decimation by the Mongols, live on today as the Assyrian Christians in Iran, Iraq, and parts of the U.S. and Canada.
Jason R. Edwards, Associate Professor of Education and History
  • Education:
    Dr. Jason Edwards
    Office: HAL 303C           Email: jredwards@gcc.edu   Phone: 3346                  Box: 3023
    • B.A., History, Asbury College, 1992 
    • M.A. History, University of Kentucky, 1994        
    • Ph.D., History and Philosophy of Education, University of Kentucky, 2003
  • Awards:
    • Lehrman Scholar: Princeton抯 James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions 2008

  • Selected Publications:

    • Ask the Professor: What Freshmen Need to Know co-authored by Dr. Timothy D. Holder and published by Greyhound Books, April 2008. 
    • 揊undamentalism and Freedom in the American Public School Classroom in Church and State Issues in America Today. Praeger Press, 2007.   
    • Several historical papers on American education presented by the Center for Vision and Values.
    • Numerous columns and reviews published in newspapers and journals across the nation
  • Specialization: Agrarian philosophy, American educational history, Southern history, cultural/worldview analysis
  • Courses taught:
    • Humanities 101 (Civilization)
    • Humanities 302 (Modern Civilization from an International Perspective)
    • Foundations of Education I
    • Foundations of Education II
    • Issues of Education Seminar
    • Foundations of History
    • Film and History
    • Historical and Philosophical Foundations of Education
    • United States History I
    • Faith and American Education
  • Organizations advised: The Fugitives (Intercollegiate Studies Inst. Chapter); Debate Team
  • Recreational interests: fishing, travel, University of Kentucky basketball, fantasy football, bowling, cards
  • Interesting historical fact:

    Beginning with William Henry Harrison in 1840, every United States president elected in a year that ended in zero died in office. This grim streak lasted until Ronald Reagan who was elected in 1980. Besides Harrison, the list includes Abraham Lincoln (1860), James Garfield (1880), William McKinley (1900), Warren Harding (1920), Franklin Roosevelt (1940), and John F. Kennedy (1960).


Andrew Mitchell, Assistant Professor of History

Office: HAL 300C          Email: ajmitchell@gcc.edu  Phone: 3825                       Box: 3043
  • Education: 
    • BA, History, Hillsdale College
    • MA, History, The Ohio State University
    • Ph.D., History, The Ohio State University
  • Selected Publications:
    • 揢na nueva perspectiva sobre la Guerra dels Segadors: en b鷖queda de la 憀impieza de fe,挃 in Actes del 5 Congr閟 d扝ist騬ia Moderna de Catalunya.  Identitats, Conflictes, Representacions  (Facultat de Geografia i Hist騬ia, Universitat de Barcelona: Diputac韔 de Barcelona, 2003), vol. II, pp. 367-372.

  • Specialization:  Early modern Europe, Military history, Spanish history
  • Courses taught:
    • HUM 101: (Civilization)
    • HST 209: Renaissance and Early-Modern Europe
    • HST 231: History of Latin America (1492-Present)
    • HST 260: Historical Writing
    • HST 265: History of Spain (1469-Present)
    • HST 336: US Military History
    • HST 360: Food & Feasting in the Western Tradition
    • HST 360: Early Modern European Historiography
    • HST 375: Two World Wars
    • HST 390: French Revolution & Napoleon
    • HUM 302: (Modern Civilization in International Perspective)
  • Recreational interests: Reading, playing the piano and tuba, watching college and professional football
  • Interesting historical fact: The rivalry between Michigan and Ohio had its roots in the legendary Toledo War of 1835-1836. Before Michigan could become a state, it needed to have its borders clearly defined, especially between current states such as Ohio and Indiana. Trouble emerged over a strip of land leading west from Toledo which was claimed by both Michigan and Ohio (with Toledo leaning towards joining Michigan). State militias were called out several times over the two years, but the only known casualty was caused by Ohioan Two Stickney (his older brother was named "On") who stabbed a Michigan sheriff venturing too far "south of the border." President Andrew Jackson forced Michigan to cede its claim and the state was then compensated for its "loss" by receiving the Upper Peninsula. This war was long forgotten by residents in both states until the 1960s, when Ohio State coach, Woody Hayes, decided to make something out of it in order to inspire his team, and the rest, as they say, is history.

John A. Sparks, Dean for the Alva J. Calderwood School of Arts and Letters and Professor of Business and Professor of History
  • Education:  

    Office: HAL 313B             Email: jasparks@gcc.edu  Phone: 2056                  Box: 3001
    • B.A., Economics Grove City College, 1966
    • J.D., University of Michigan Law School. 
    • Admitted, State Bars in Michigan and Pennsylvania
  •  Awards:
    • Grove City College Professor of the Year, 2001
    • Jack Kennedy Memorial Alumni Achievement Award, 2002
  • Selected Publications:
    • 揈ducation Means Emancipation: Poverty and Schooling, Center for Vision & Values Poverty Conference, 2006
    • Editor, Is Capitalism Morally Bankrupt?  (Grove City College Press, 2000)
    • 揈ducational Rebirth in Wilkinsburg:  The Turner School Initiative for the Allegheny Institute, Pittsburgh, PA, 1996
    • 揑f We Don抰 Get Our Share, in Clich閟 of Politics, Mark Spangler, ed. (The Foundation for Economic Education, 1994)
    • 揚rivate Property, Non-ownership and the Third World, in Man of Principle, John W. Robbins and Mark Spangler, eds. (Grove City College Press, 1992)
    • 揃iblical Principles and Business Law, in Biblical Principles & Business梩he Practice, Richard C. Chewning, ed. (NavPress, 1990)
    • 揚ennsylvania Education in the 1990s: The Need for Choice and Substance, in Leading Pennsylvania Into the 21st Century: Policy Strategies for the Future, Don E. Eberly, ed. (The Commonwealth Foundation, 1990) Editor, The Infant Formula Feeding Controversy (Kendall/Hunt Publishing Co., 1985)揟he Legal Standing of Gold桟ontract v. Status, in Gold Is Money, in Hans F. Sennholz, ed. (Greenwood Press, 1975) 
    • Thirty-five articles and reviews in the following publications:  The Journal of Christian Reconstruction;  The Presbyterian Layman; Discipleship Journal; Engage Social Action; The Freeman; The University Bookman;  Food Policy;  Private Practice; The St. Croix Review; Pennsylvania Outlook, Quarterly Review of Business;  Allegheny Institute Occasional Paper.
  • Specialization: U.S. Constitutional History and Educational Policy
  • Courses taught:  U.S. Constitutional History I, U.S. Constitutional II, and Business Law
  • Organizations advised:  Pre-law advisor and Advisor to Law Society.
  • Recreational interests:  Golf, walking, swimming and gardening
  • Interesting historical fact:  The first Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court was John Jay, who also authored several of the Federalist Papers.  He resigned that position to run to what was then a more prestigious post--Governor of New York.

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Last Updated: 7/29/2009 | Site Maintained by: Dr. Gary Smith

2009-10 Grove City College History Department