Joseph W. Pearson is a doctoral student in the Department of History after completing a Master’s degree at UA in 2010. His research interests include early American Political Thought, the Second Party System, and Southern Political and Social History. His dissertation will look specifically at the rise and fall of the American Whigs in Kentucky and the border South from 1830-1860. The ultimate goal of his project is to understand antebellum political culture, the relationship of politics to community, and the political and personal costs of the fall of the American Whigs as a viable party. Joseph’s first scholarly article, “William Gaston, the Borough Controversy, and North Carolina’s Changing Political Culture in the 1835 Constitutional Convention,” was recently published in the October 2011 edition of North Carolina Historical Review. He also writes a quarterly column on the Creek War for Alabama Heritage and their continuing support of the statewide “Becoming Alabama” initiative. Pearson grew up in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains in Kentucky and came to UA from the University of Kentucky, where he graduated with honors in 2008. Before that, Mr. Pearson served for six years with the United States Marine Corps, earning the rank of Sergeant and an honorable discharge in 2004. He is unapologetic about his enthusiasm for the University of Alabama and his excitement about being a part of the scholarly Crimson Tide community. Joseph dedicates his work to his parents, who taught him the value of faith, honesty, and hard work, and to his lovely wife, Erica, and their four beautiful children, Kieran, Isaac, Cora, and Adeleine. He will sit for his PhD examinations in the Spring and begin his dissertation, in earnest, after completing them.
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