Christopher Phillips

Christopher Phillips

Christopher Phillips is the John and Dorothy Hermanies Professor of American History and the University Distinguished Professor in the Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences at the University of Cincinnati. His research interests are in the era of the Civil War and Reconstruction, and more specifically, in the American South and West, especially the middle border states.

He is the author of seven books focused on slavery and freedom, urban African Americans, emancipation, war, race, politics, and memory during and after the Civil War era, including The Rivers Ran Backward: The Civil War and the Remaking of the American Middle Border (2016), which received Tom Watson Brown Prize from the Society of Civil War Historians and the George and Ann Richards Center for Research on the Civil War Era, as well as the the Society of Military Historians' Distinguished Book Award, the Midwestern History Association's John Gjerde Prize, the State Historical Society of Missouri's Missouri Book Award, and the Ohio Academy of History's Distinguished Book Prize. It was also named a Choice outstanding academic book and a Civil War Monitor best book of the year.

His other books are The Civil War in the Border South (2013); Freedom's Port: The African American Community of Baltimore, 1790-1860 (1997), a cowinner of the Best Book prize from the Maryland Historical Society; Missouri's Confederate: Claiborne Fox Jackson and the Creation of Southern Identity in the Border West (2000); and Damned Yankee: The Life of Nathaniel Lyon (1996), a Choice outstanding academic book. His essays have appeared in such publications as Journal of the Civil War Era, Civil War History, and the New York Times. His work has been supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American Philosophical Society, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. From 1999 to 2011, he served as a coeditor of Ohio Valley History.


  • "Not To Divide the North": The Politics of Dissent during the Civil War and the Making of the American Midwest
  • From Border States to Border South: Slavery, Civil War, and the Politics of Identity in the Border Slave States
  • Legacy of Dissent: The Civil War Roots of Populist White Nationalism in Middle America *
  • Lincoln's Grasp of War: Conciliation, Emancipation, and the Civil War in the Border States
  • Southern Cross, North Star: The Politics of Region, Irreconciliation, and Civil War Memory in the American Heartland
  • The Other Reconstruction: Race, Regions, and Irreconciliation on the Post-Civil War Middle Border
  • The Roots of Quasi-Freedom: Slavery, Manumission, and the African American Community of Early National Baltimore

Lectures marked with a * are offered as part of the OAH's initiative, Historians' Perspectives on the Rise of Donald Trump.


“From Border States to Border South: Slavery, Civil War, and the Politics of Identity in Missouri”

This lecture was presented as the annual Spencer Cave Black History Month Lecture at Park University in Parkville, Missouri, and sponsored by the university’s history program. Recorded by Ronnie LaNear in February 2011.


“From Border States to Border South: Slavery, Civil War, and the Politics of Identity in Missouri”

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