Main content

Laura M. Chmielewski

Associate Professor of History

Laura Chmielewski teaches early American, Atlantic world, and public history. She is also the author of three books: The Spice of Popery: Converging Christianities on an Early American Frontier (University of Notre Dame, 2011), The Atlantic Experience: Peoples, Places, Ideas (with Catherine M. Armstrong; Palgrave Macmillan, 2014), and Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet: Exploration, Encounter and the French New World (Routledge/Taylor & Francis, 2017), as well as numerous essays, book chapters, and reviews, and public presentations. Chmielewski is also a historian-in-residence at History Hudson Valley, a consortium of house museums, and frequent contributor of book reviews to America magazine, the national Jesuit weekly.

Research Interests


Her research interests include Atlantic World religious cultures and practices, material culture of the Atlantic World, Catholicism in the colonial Americas, the French colonial new world, maritime history, early American diversity, and the colonial revival period.

Representative Courses

  • The Atlantic World, 1450-1888
  • Living in Early America
  • Colonial and Revolutionary America
  • The New Nation: America, 1788-1848
  • American Frontiers: The West, 1607-1935
  • The Blue and the Gray: The American Civil War
  • Classic Hollywood, Early America
  • History and Its Publics: Presenting the American Past
  • Development of the United States I
  • From Exploration to New Nation: America, 1491 - 1820 (new introductory course for 2018)

Publications

Chmielewski Marquette and JollietThe Spice of PoperyOther Publications:   Review of Kevin Starr, Continental Ambitions: Catholics in North America, the Colonial Experience (American             Catholic Studies, forthcoming) Review of Susan Juster, Sacred Violence in Early America (Catholic Historical Review, forthcoming) Review of R. Emmet Curran, Papist Devils: Catholics in British North America, 1574-1783.  Journal of              American History (June 2015, Volume 102 No 10) “Pierre Biard, Jesuit and Pirate of Mount Desert Island,” in Jeffrey Fortin and Mark Meuwese, eds., Atlantic Biographies: Individuals and Peoples of the Atlantic World  (Brill; 2013), title for Brill's “Atlantic World” series eds. Benjamin Schmidt and Wim Klooster “Displaying the Dutch: The Dyckman Farmhouse Museum and Dutch Colonial Revival” in Panetta, ed., Dutch New York: The Roots of the Hudson Valley Culture (Fordham University Press, 2009) “Slavery in New York,” museum exhibit review for Journal of American History (Summer ’07)

Other Publications:

Review of Kevin Starr, Continental Ambitions: Catholics in North America, the Colonial Experience (American

Catholic Studies, forthcoming)

Review of Susan Juster, Sacred Violence in Early America (Catholic Historical Review, forthcoming)

Review of R. Emmet Curran, Papist Devils: Catholics in British North America, 1574-1783. Journal of

American History (June 2015, Volume 102 No 10)

“Pierre Biard, Jesuit and Pirate of Mount Desert Island,” in Jeffrey Fortin and Mark Meuwese, eds.,

Atlantic Biographies: Individuals and Peoples of the Atlantic World (Brill; 2013), title for Brill's “Atlantic

World” series eds. Benjamin Schmidt and Wim Klooster

“Displaying the Dutch: The Dyckman Farmhouse Museum and Dutch Colonial Revival” in

Panetta, ed., Dutch New York: The Roots of the Hudson Valley Culture (Fordham University Press, 2009)

“Slavery in New York,” museum exhibit review for Journal of American History (Summer ’07)

Presentations / Conferences

Select Conference Appearances:

  •  Chair, “Protestants and Catholics in Early New England,” American Historical Association/American Society of Church History (January 2015)
  • Presenter, “Holy Rolling: Religious Culture and the Early Modern Maritime Atlantic” paper to be presented at Forum for European Expansion and Global Interaction Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA (February 2014)
  • Chair, “Bringing Slavery into Interpretation at American House Museums,” panel presented at Society of Historians of the Early American Republic Annual Meeting, St. Louis, MO (July 2013)
  • Presenter, “The Ship as Church: Seventeenth Century Seafarers and the Creation of Shipboard Religious Spaces,” paper scheduled for American Studies Annual Meeting, Baltimore, MD (October 2011) as part of panel “The Material Culture of American Religion”
  • Presenter, “Jesuits at Sea: Atlantic Crossings, Religious Culture and the Society of Jesus, 1611 - 1744,” paper at the 2011 Annual Meeting of the Omohundro Institute for Early American History and Culture, New Paltz, NY (June 2011); also originator (with Christopher Magra, University of Tennessee) of panel “Maritime Religiosity in the Atlantic World: Seafarers and the Observation, Formation and Transmission of Religious Ideas”
  • Commentator and Chair of panel “Biography and Material Culture as Pedagogy: from the Archives to the Kitchen,” panel presented at conference SI 350: Celebrating Staten Island History and Culture (March 2011)
  • Presenter, “Preparing the Next Generation: Undergraduates as Public History Students and Consumers,”      presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council for Public History/American Association of State and Local History, Providence, RI (April ’09)
  • Presenter, “The Ways of ‘His Industry:’ Men of God and Their Transatlantic Ministries on the Maine Frontier, 1688-1727,” presented at the Annual Meeting of the Organization of American Historians, Seattle, WA (March ’09)

Select Public Lectures:

“Faith and the Sea,” lecture presented at Dobbs Ferry Historical Society, November 5, 2017.

Keynote Speaker, Society of the History of Discoveries Annual Meeting, Milwaukee, WI, September 23, 2017.

“Jacques Marquette, Louis Jolliet, and the French New World,” lecture presented at National Park Service/Old St. Paul’s Church National Historic Site (August 2017).  Broadcast premier on C-Span September 19, 2017.

“Westchester County in an Atlantic World,” lecture presented at National Park Service/Old St. Paul’s Church National Historic Site (November 2016)  

“Anne Hutchinson’s Atlantic Odyssey,” lecture presented at National Park Service/Old St. Paul’s Church National Historic Site (August 2015)  

“Religious Pluralism in Early America,” lecture presented at National Park Service/Old St. Paul’s Church National Historic Site (August 2014)  

“Religious Tensions in Early America,” lecture presented at National Park Service/Old St. Paul’s Church National Historic Site (August 2013)  

“Atlantic Anne: Anne Hutchinson’s Atlantic World” lecture presented at Philipse Manor Hall in Celebration of the “Anne Hutchinson Year” (November 2011)

“Anne Hutchinson and Her Family: Complex Religious Legacies,” lecture presented at National Park Service/Old St. Paul’s Church National Historic Site (March 2011)

“House Museums and the Colonial Revival,” lecture presented to volunteer corps of the Hudson River Museum (Fall ’09)

“The World That Made John Jay,” lecture presented at John Jay Homestead State Historic Site, Katonah, NY (Fall ’07)

“Hudson Highlights and History” lecture presented for Hudson River Museum “Rolling Up the River”program (October 2005)