OAH Distinguished Lecturer Profile

OAH Distinguished Lectureship program 40 years 1981-2021

James Marten

Portrait of James Marten

James Marten is a professor of history and the chair of the history department at Marquette University, where he teaches courses on the Civil War and on children's history. He is the author of The Children's Civil War (1998), which was selected as an outstanding academic title by Choice magazine; Sing Not War: The Lives of Union and Confederate Veterans in Gilded Age America (2011); and America's Corporal: James Tanner in War and Peace (2014). He is also the editor of Children and War: An Historical Anthology (2002) and Childhood and Child Welfare in the Progressive Era: A Brief History with Documents (2004).

Featured Lecture

OAH Lectures

Although hailed as heroes on Memorial Day and the Fourth of July, this lecture explores the relationship between Union veterans and their fellow northerners, which was complicated by politics, pensions, and contested ideas about how to commemorate the war.
James Tanner lost two legs at Second Manassas, but went on to become a famous speaker, veterans advocate, and Republican operative. Everyone knew who Corporal Tanner was in the 1890s; this lecture explores his life as as representative veteran and Gilded Age go-getter.
The Civil War invaded every element of children's lives--North and South, black and white. This lecture samples some of the ways in which children were both victims and actors in the America's bloodiest war.