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The UMass History Journal

Founded in 2016 by members of Phi Alpha Theta, the national history honor society, the UMass History Journal is devoted to showcasing the diverse historical work of undergraduate students. This publication includes essays, book reviews, and historical reflections written either within or outside the framework of undergraduate courses. Authors may be history majors, minors, or non-majors who have interests in the study of history. 

Spring 2019

Past Editions:
Spring 2018
Spring 2017


Editorial Board and Advisors

Undergraduate Editorial Board:

Devon King, Production Editor. Devon is a senior History major, with a focus on historic preservation. Intending to graduate with Departmental Honors, Devon is working to complete a thesis on the Heritage State Parks. After graduating, he is taking a gap year to gain experience in the preservation field before moving onto graduate school. Contact:

Benjamin Lerer, Copy Editor: Benjamin is a senior History major with an interest in seventeenth-century English political history and the military history of colonial Massachusetts. He is currently working on a thesis on the concept of kingship and the trial of Charles I. Contact:

Justin Murphy, Publicity Editor. Justin is a senior History and Political Science major with interests in East Asian History, political advocacy, and nature. He is currently working on a thesis on the 1898 Hundred Days Reform in China. Contact:

Kyran Schnur, Acquisitions Editor. Kyran is a junior History major with a focus on Inter-American history. His past research topics include mass incarceration on the U.S.-Mexico border and diplomatic relations between the U.S., Mexico, and Native American nations. He also serves as President of the UMass History Club. Contact:

Editorial Advisors:
Professor Garrett Washington
Professor Daniel Gordon

Submission Guidelines

We accept submissions in three categories: essays or book reviews based on secondary sources, essays based on primary sources, and miscellaneous historical reflections. Essay submissions must be historical, academic pieces with a clear thesis, analysis and support. But for historical reflections, we also encourage students to submit reflective writing pieces on the study of history, or what history means to them. This section of the journal is particularly open-ended to students. You may submit pieces that were assigned as part of coursework or essays done independently if they fit the academic criteria.

How to submit your work

Submissions are open on Monday December 11th 2017 and close on Thursday February 9th 2017 at 11:59 p.m. for the 2017-2018 edition. Pieces should be submitted in a word document (.doc or .docx) should be sent to

Review Process

Upon receiving each submission, the editorial board will decide on the appropriateness of the piece for the journal and will then solicit feedback from an outside reviewer. The author’s name and identifying information will be removed from the submission to allow the reviewer to concentrate only on the content. Based upon the feedback from the outside reviewer, whose identifying information will remain unknown to the author, the editorial board will decide whether to publish the piece. We will then send a notification to the author, indicating that their article will 1) be published as is; 2) require minor revisions; 3) require major revisions; 4) not be published in the journal at this time.

Article Length and Formatting

Writers are encouraged to limit articles to a maximum of 7,000 words, including footnote citations. The document must be set at the US letter, 8.5 x 11 standard, and should be double-spaced with 1-inch margins on each side. Please use a 12-point font, and preferably in Times New Roman font.

Cover Page
The cover page should provide the title of the article, complete contact information for the author (address, phone, and e-mail), author’s affiliation, and any acknowledgments that you wish to include. Please provide a total word count and indicate the number of tables and/or figures as included.

The article must include an abstract of no more than 150 words. The abstract should not duplicate the text verbatim but include the research question, and clarify the sources, data and texts used throughout the work and give an indication of the overall conclusion or findings achieved.

Manuscripts that have been accepted for publication but do not conform to the style guide may be returned to the author for amendment. The Editors also reserve the right to alter usage to conform to the style guide issued by the Publishers. Authors may not supply new materials or request major alterations following the copyediting stage so please ensure that all text is final upon acceptance.


Quotation marks

  • Double quotation marks should be used for in-text quotations, direct speech, and publication titles, and also for constructed terms or concepts, for ironic effect, or for authorial commentary. In all cases, a period or comma precedes the closing double quotation mark.

Citations and Bibliography

  • Notes should be presented as footnotes and full bibliographic information should appear at first citation.
  • Citations should conform to the Chicago Manual of Style citation system. Please consult the Chicago-Style Citation Quick Guide for reference.
  • Any acknowledgments should be placed as an unnumbered note before the Notes section.
  • Note reference superscripts should be in Arabic numerals (1,2,3 etc.) not Roman numerals.
  • URLs should not be located in the main text when used in a bibliographical sense. URLs should be relocated to endnotes or the reference list.
  • Please refer to the Purdue Online Writing Lab's guide to the Chicago Manual of Style for examples and detailed descriptions. See also this list of examples prepared by the UMass History Journal.

Pre-Submission Check List

  • All text, including headings, sub-headings, notes, and references, is set in a standard 12-point type, such as Times or Times New Roman, and the text is double-spaced with a 1-inch margin on all sides.
  • The piece is no longer than 7,000 words with footnotes and references included.
  • The abstract is no more than 150 words.
  • There are no URLs located in the main text when used in a bibliographical sense (although names such as are acceptable). URLs should be relocated to endnotes or the reference list.