Field Study participants will visit locations significant in the evolution of the new nation, including museums, battlefields, and colonial sites created to commemorate important events and individuals. This course is designed for teachers of United States History and is intended for Jr. High School and 5th grade Elementary teachers who include the teaching of Colonial America, the Revolution and Constitutional Principles in their social studies curriculum. Teachers will study significant issues, events, leaders, principles and movements in this region in the colonial, Revolutionary, and early national eras.
The tour will start at the Colonial Triangle in Virginia, e.g. Jamestown, Williamsburg and Yorktown. Participants will study early English agricultural settlement of the South, including the beginnings of the North American slave trade. In Williamsburg they will study the formation of colonial governments and in Yorktown they will study this key campaign of the Revolutionary War. Participants will then study the lives and ideals of Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, and George Washington at their respective homes, Monticello, Montpelier, and Mount Vernon. At Colonial St. Mary’s City, participants will study the contentious Catholic and Protestant settlement of Maryland and the resulting Toleration Act. In Washington D.C., participants they will have the opportunity to study slavery at the National African American Smithsonian Museum. Lastly participants will travel to Philadelphia where they will visit Independence Hall, the National Constitution Center, and the Museum of the American Revolution as well as important sites in the diverse religious history of this region. Participation in the field study will require rigorous physical activity.
Professor of History
Matthew E. Mason is an associate professor of history at BYU. He received his PhD in history from the University of Maryland in 2002, and started at BYU in fall 2003 after a year at Eastern Michigan University. He teaches a variety of courses on the history of slavery, early America, and Britain. He has published articles in a variety of journals of national and international reach. He has written two books: Slavery and Politics in the Early American Republic (2006); and Apostle of Union: A Political Biography of Edward Everett (2016). He has co-edited books including John Quincy Adams and the Politics of Slavery: Selections from the Diary (2017); and Contesting Slavery: The Politics of Bondage and Freedom in the New American Nation (2008). He lives in Springville with his wife Stacie and daughters Emily (born 1999), Hannah (born 2001), and Rachel (born 2006).
Professor of Pedagogy
Cindy Ness is a 30-year veteran of the public education system. She is the recipient of six educational grants and a Fulbright Scholar. In 2008, she received both the Middle School Alpine Spirit Award for Excellence in Education and a Crystal Apple for Excellence in Teaching.
Cindy joined the BYU history faculty in 2009. She taught American history courses and worked with prospective history and social studies teachers. She returned to the public classroom in 2012, while continuing to teach Independent Study courses at BYU. Cindy has taught US History & Education seminars throughout the state of Utah, including seven previous Larry H. Miller Driven 2 Teach History Seminars.
Cindy and her husband, Rob, have four children.