Spencer Crew

Spencer Crew

Spencer Crew has worked at museums as well as universities over the past twenty-five years. The Clarence J. Robinson Professor of American, African American, and Public History at George Mason University, he is the former director of the Smithsonian National Museum of American History and the former president of the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center. His primary area of research interest is African American history, and he has created exhibitions and written on both the Underground Railroad and the migration of African Americans to the North during and after World War I. Crew is currently serving as interim director of the National Museum of African American History and Culture.


  • African American Migration: The Great Migration, 1915–1940
  • Mr. Civil Rights Thurgood Marshall and his commitment to Human Rights
  • Seedbed of the Modern Civil Rights Movement: A Prequel Story
  • The Modern Civil Rights Movement
  • The Real Story of the Underground Railroad
  • The Story of Slavery through the Voices of the Formerly Enslaved
  • The Story of the National Museum of African American History and Culture


Teaching Underground Railroad History

This conversation features OAH Distinguished Lecturers Spencer Crew and Matthew Pinsker, with session organizer and OAH member Timothy Westcott of Park University. Recorded at the National Archives at Kansas City in February 2017.


Civil War at 150 podcast conversation with OAH Distinguished Lectureship Program coordinator Annette Windhorn

Visit the OAH YouTube channel for more audio and video recordings.