Selected Works

Commissioned works
Social and Family History
Explores how families worked in the US in the 1800s
History in a different key
The book explores what makes Minnesota Minnesota and what makes Minnesota America.
Collection of essays


Challenging Women: College of Saint Benedict since 1913
The College of Saint Benedict has been educating women for over 100 years and I wrote this story of their history -- focusing on the founding generation of sisters, the Catholic context, the changes in women's higher education, the earthquakes that shook college life in the 1960s, the rise of women's sports.

We Grew Up Together: Brothers and Sisters in 19th c. America
Using letters between adult brothers and sisters in ten families (as well as reflections on my own family of 11 siblings), I explore family life in the context of gender roles, family roles, and social expections. I find few "traditional" families and find, instead, families that feel surprisingly modern in the issues they face and the complexities they have to untangle.

Creating Minnesota: A History from the Inside Out
Through the lives of the famous and those only known to their families and neighbors, this book brings Minnesota's past to life.

The State We're In: Reflections on Minnesota History
These essays all come from a 2008 conference on Minnesota at 150.

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