Dr. James J. Broomall, Director
James J. Broomall is the Director of the George Tyler Moore Center for the Study of the Civil War and an assistant professor of History at Shepherd University. Before coming to Shepherd, Broomall most recently served as an assistant professor of History at the University of North Florida, Jacksonville, Florida. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Florida in 2011 working under Professor William A. Link whose family, coincidentally, is from the Shepherdstown area. The University of North Carolina at Greensboro awarded his master’s degree in history and museum studies in 2006, and he earned his B.A. from the University of Delaware in 2001.
With an abiding passion for the Civil War-era, Professor Broomall has worked in diverse environments ranging from academic institutions to local museums, and developed courses, conferences, and programs of interpretation focusing on the experiences of civilians, soldiers, and slaves during the mid-Nineteenth Century. Broomall’s scholarship is dedicated to the Civil War-era. He is currently completing a manuscript-length study of white southern men and their families during civil war and reconstruction tentatively titled, Personal Reconstructions: War and Peace in the American South, 1840-1880, and along with William A. Link is publishing an edited collection Rethinking American Emancipation: Legacies of Slavery and the Quest for Black Freedom (2016, Cambridge University Press). Further, he has published articles in Civil War History, The Journal of the Civil War Era, and the edited volume, Creating Citizenship in the Nineteenth-Century South in addition to historiographical essays, book reviews, and online essays. Broomall has also recently completed for the National Park Service and the Organization of American Historians a study of the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal during the American Civil War, which is being used for interpretative programs, online materials, and a brochure.
He currently resides in Shepherdstown with his wife Tish and their sons Simon and Henry.
Jennifer Alarcon, Program Assistant
Jennifer joined the Center in the winter of 2016. Her responsibilities include: maintaining the Center’s extensive reference library resources of books, periodicals and microfilms; assisting students and other researchers in using our library resources; assuring the content and accuracy of the searchable databases of the common soldiers of West Virginia during the Civil War – which now consists of over 20,000 soldiers in 14 regiments and burials of West Virginia soldiers at seven national cemeteries; managing the Center’s social media outlets and website; aiding in the planning and execution of the Center’s events and programs; and providing the Center’s primary, front line public contact services, whether by telephone or in person.
Before coming to Shepherd, Jennifer most recently worked as a PAC fundraiser at the American Medical Association. Jennifer earned her B.A. from Georgetown University in 2006 majoring in political science and minoring in French. She currently resides in Shepherdstown with her husband, Anthony, and their three children, Hudson, Luke, and Ellie.