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Matthew Isham

Matthew Isham

Richards Civil War Era Center, Managing Director

The Journal of the Civil War Era, Managing Editor

114B Pond Laboratory
University Park , PA 16802
Office Phone: (814) 863-6702


  1. PhD, Pennsylvania State University, 2010
  2. MA, University of Maine, 1999
  3. BA, Colby College, 1993


I am a political historian who studies the organizational structure of antebellum political parties. My research focuses on the ways in which partisan newspapers and their editors essentially defined their parties' organizational form and practices. I am particularly interested in the ways that partisan editors managed the parties' skeletal organizational structure and orchestrated their electoral campaigns through both legitimate and illegitimate means, from handling party correspondence and distributing campaign literature to buying votes and mobilizing gangs of thugs to "work" the polls on election days.

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