Lumbee History for Everyone

I am a native Southerner and belong to the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina, born in Robeson County, NC and raised in Durham. I am a historian and documentary film producer, an Associate Professor of History at UNC-Chapel Hill and Director of the Center for the Study of the American South.

I write and teach on topics including American Indian history, Southern history, religion, music, and foodways. My second book, The Lumbee Indians: An American Struggle, will be published by UNC Press in September 2018. My first book, Lumbee Indians in the Jim Crow South: Race, Identity, and the Making of a Nation, was also published by UNC Press in 2010. Recently I have published essays in Scalawag and the New York Times.

I also work in documentary film production, most recently as a co-producer with Markay Media, including Private Violence (broadcast on HBO in 2014), A Chef’s Life (currently airing on PBS), and Road to Race Day (streaming on YouTube). Previous films include In the Light of Reverence (broadcast on PBS in 2001), and two short films, Real Indian (1996), and Sounds of Faith (1997), both of which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.

I live in Durham with my partner and daughter, fifteen minutes from my mom and two of my brothers. I am one of seven siblings. I engage on Twitter and Instagram. You can find more work from Indigenous women historians at Women Also Know History.

Finally, fun facts Courtesy of South Writ Large:

Ten Things I Can’t Do Without (I’m surprised to have discovered that you never know what all you can do without. But here are the things that make me feel like myself)

  1. Lydia
  2. Time (with my family and friends in North Carolina, Ohio, California, Georgia, Tennessee, Missouri, Arizona, New York, and that mysterious place musicians call “the road”)
  3. A babysitter
  4. Sound (of music, lately Atlanta-based hip-hop)
  5. Sight (through a camera)
  6. Smell (of honeysuckle)
  7. Touch (of snuggling)
  8. Taste (of coffee and bourbon)
  9. Cle de Peau concealer in ochre
  10. Pa sacks

Thank you for visiting!

2 Replies to “Lumbee History for Everyone”

  1. Is Lydia your partner? That name jumped out at me because I grew up in a small community called Lydia, age 7 -14. Lydia is located 6 miles southwest of Hartsville, SC, Darlington county..

    Looking fwd to reading your Lumber Indian History. I spent lots of time working in Robeson county as a state employee – 1974 – 85

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