Mark Ellis


  • United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

Aspects of the History of American Race Relations


Research output per year

If you made any changes in Pure these will be visible here soon.

Personal profile

Personal Statement

I came to Strathclyde University in 1989, after teaching American Studies at West London Institute of Higher Education (now Brunel University).  My undergraduate teaching has mainly been on American History, particularly during the 20th century and with an emphasis on political and social movements, and International History.  My Master's level teaching is directly related to my research on American race relations in the first quarter of the 20th century.  

My main interests have been in the impact of World War I on American society, the response of the social sciences to race and other social issues in the United States, the interracial cooperation movement before 1940, and the origins of the American civil rights movement.

In addition to several journal articles and book chapters, my main publications have been two monographs concerning American race relations during World War I and the southern interracial cooperation movement during the Progressive era and interwar period:

Race, War, and Surveillance: African Americans and the United States Government During World War I (2001);

Race Harmony and Black Progress: Jack Woofter and the Interracial Cooperation Movement (2013). 

Both books were published by Indiana University Press.

I supervise four PhD students, one of whom is supported by the Buffalo Bill Center of the West and the McCracken Research Library at Cody, Wyoming.

I am currently the Head of the Graduate School of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences (HaSS), after being Postgraduate Research Director for History and Modern Langauges in the School of Humanities.  I have been Senior Vice Dean of the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences (HaSS) and Vice Dean Academic (twice), with wide-ranging roles that included support for the Faculty Management Team and contributing to the planning process.  

I have been an external examiner at the Universities of Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Sussex.

I was the Strathclyde theme leader for the current QAA Enhancement Theme, "Student Transitions" (2014-17).


Research Interests

My current research is into the relationship between race, violence and property in rural Georgia after World War I.  

Specifically, this means examining changing patterns of black farm ownership and tenancy, migration, the lynching problem and Klan-type activity in groups of small counties in Georgia.  Court records and property deeds and transactions, still held in the courthouses of the county towns, are the prime source for this study.

 I have also been researching the role of social scientists in the formulation of US government policy in the 20th century and the educational work of the interracial copperation movement in the South.


Teaching Interests


Year 1        British History since 1790 (lectures) 
Year 2        History of the USA since 1877 
Year 3/4     Slavery in World History 
Year 4        The USA Between the Wars (Honours special subject)

Honours Dissertations: 6-10 each year



MSc class: Segregation, Migration & War: African Americans in the Age of Jim Crow, 1900-1930


Recently supervised PhD students

Michelle Delaney, "Advance Work: Art and Advertising in Buffalo Bill's Wild West" (Strathclyde thesis no. T14989).  Degree awarded 2018.

Jeremy Johnston, "Two Rough Riders: Buffalo Bill and Theodore Roosevelt's Enigmatic Relationship" (Strathclyde Thesis no. T   ). Degree awarded 2018.

Benjamin Quail, "Propaganda and the Presidency: An Analysis of Lyndon B. Johnson's Media Relations, 1963-1968" (Strathclyde thesis no. T14871).  Degree awarded 2017.

Davies, Gregory Spencer,"Landscape and Myth in the American West: Rival Visions of Utah Territory, 1847-868." (Strathclyde thesis no. T14513)   Degree awarded 2016

Dixon, Christopher, "The Visit by Buffalo Bill's Wild West to Barcelona, December 1899 - January 1890." (Strathclyde thesis no.T13695). Degree awarded 2014

Cuthbert-Kerr, Simon Thomas, "The Development of Black Political Organization in Quitman County, Mississippi, 1945-1975" (Strathclyde thesis no. T11609). Degree awarded 2006

McKinstry, David, "The Politics of Civil Rights, May 1963 to August 1964." (Strathclyde thesis no. T11381). Degree awarded 2005 



Current PhD students

1st supervisor:

Alessandra Magrin, Italian Perceptions of the American West and the Impact of the Wild West Show Tours of Italy in 1890 and 1906

Barbara  Ball, A Historical and Genealogical Analysis of the Growth of Two Industrial Cities in Northeastern Ohio, 1840-1890

Tahitia McCabe, A Historical and Genealogical Analysis of the American Community in Scotland in the 19th Century.

2nd supervisor:

Erin Lux, Criminal Justice and Correction Policy since 1945



Academic / Professional qualifications

MA, History, University of Aberdeen

PhD, History, University of Aberdeen

If you made any changes in Pure these will be visible here soon.