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Meet the SOHP



Rachel F. Seidman
Director and Adjunct Assistant Professor of History and Women’s and Gender Studies

Rachel Seidman is a U.S. historian specializing in women’s history. With a B.A. from Oberlin College and a Ph.D. from Yale, Seidman’s current research project is an oral history of feminist activism in the U.S. between 2000 and 2015 (under contract with UNC Press). She is the author of The Civil War: A History in Documents (Oxford University Press) and the co-editor of Our Documents: 100 Milestone Documents from the National Archives. Seidman served as the Associate Director of the SOHP from 2011-2017, and before that was Associate Director of the History, Public Policy and Social Change program at Duke University. Curriculum Vitae

Sara Wood
Project Manager

Prior to joining SOHP in Fall 2017, Sara Wood traveled the American South collecting stories of the region’s diverse cultures as the oral historian for the Southern Foodways Alliance, based at the University of Mississippi. She’s produced stories for National Public Radio, and sound walks and installations for museums and cultural sites such as the Whitney, the New York Public Library, and the National Park Service. She has an MFA in creative writing from the University of North Carolina Wilmington, and she attended the radio program at The Salt Institute for Documentary Studies in Portland, Maine.

Emily Chilton
Collections and Editorial Assistant

Emily Chilton received her B.A. from Meredith College in 2018, having majored in English and history. Prior to joining SOHP, she worked as an intern and editorial assistant for Duke University Press. Emily’s research interests include Southern literature, particularly the literature of the changing South, Southern history, and North Carolina history. Her undergraduate honors history thesis focused on the reactions within North Carolina to Confederate policy. She is originally from the community of Shoals, NC and understands firsthand the value of listening to and preserving Southern stories. She is enthusiastic about combining her interests in editing and historical research here at SOHP.

Jacquelyn Dowd Hall
Founder and Senior Research Fellow

Professor Hall’s research interests include U.S. women’s history, southern history, working-class history, oral history, and cultural/intellectual history. She served as president of the Organization of American Historians in 2003-04 and of the Southern Historical Association in 2001-02. She was also the founding president of the Labor and Working Class History Association. She was awarded a National Humanities Medal in 1999 for her efforts to deepen the nation’s understanding of and engagement with the humanities, and in 1997, she received UNC’s Distinguished Teaching Award for graduate teaching. Her publications include Revolt Against Chivalry: Jessie Daniel Ames and the Women’s Campaign Against Lynching (1979, 1993) and Like a Family: The Making of a Southern Cotton Mill World (1987, 2000), which she co-authored with James Leloudis, Robert Korstad, Mary Murphy, Lu Ann Jones, and Chris Daly. She is currently working on a collection of her articles and on two book projects: Writing a Way Home, about women writers and intellectuals and the refashioning of regional identity in the twentieth-century South; and a study of the social movements spawned by the civil rights campaigns of the 1960s and of the ideological, political, and structural factors that blunted their force.

Field Scholars

Melissa Dollman is a PhD student in American Studies. She earned her B.A. in American Studies from the University of California, Berkeley and her M.A. from the University of California, Los Angeles in Moving Image Archives Studies. For over a decade prior to pursuing her Ph.D. she was a librarian, audiovisual archivist, consultant, intern, volunteer, adjunct faculty, exhibit developer, and researcher for a variety of commercial and public institutions (Pacific Film Archive, Women In Film Foundation, UCLA, Academy Film Archive, Discovery Communications, Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University, State Archives of North Carolina, and North Carolina State University). She has presented at numerous conferences, written short pieces for The Moving Image and a chapter on privacy and home movies in Amateur Movie Making: Aesthetics of the Everyday in New England, 1915-1960 (Indiana University Press, 2017).  She is on the board of directors for the Association of Moving Image Archivists; and at SOHP she is a field scholar assists with the SUDDEN project, research, and creating digital projects.

Danielle Dulken is a reproductive justice activist from the mountains of western North Carolina. Her research considers how practices of reproductive wellness resist colonizing systems in southern Appalachia. Using critical race theory, Danielle aims to challenge narratives that foreclose on the region’s diversity and modernity. While earning an M.A. in History from American University, Danielle trained as a public historian and oral historian. She is now an oral history field scholar at the Southern Oral History Program where she coordinates student-led research projects. In addition to collaborative oral history projects, Danielle is excited about research projects with outcomes in sound art and experimental film. She currently lives in Chapel Hill with her partner and two cats and serves on the Board of Directors at the Carolina Abortion Fund. You may reach her here:

Isabell Moore is a PhD Candidate in the Department of History at UNC. She received her BA in History-Sociology from Columbia University and her MA in Women’s and Gender Studies from UNC Greensboro. Her dissertation research examines Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) organizing in North Carolina in the 70s, 80s and 90s.  She is particularly interested in how those involved in coalition efforts across lines of race, class, and gender, attempted to do large-scale organizing focused on transformation, rather than either small-scale transformational organizing or large-scale accommodationist reform efforts. At the SOHP, Isabell supports the Black Communities conference being planned for Spring 2018 ( and assists with workshops on oral history methods.  She lives in her hometown of Greensboro, NC with her partner and  three year old son.  She has been involved in activism for racial, economic and queer justice for many years.  She seeks to connect historical research on social movements with the activism of today.

Abigail Nover is a second-year graduate student in Folklore. Her MA thesis is a music-based interactive web application for fourth grade classrooms, designed to supplement the NC Common Core Social Studies Standards for teaching North Carolina’s history and cultural heritage. She holds a BFA in Sound Design from the School of Drama at Carnegie Mellon University.





Regan Cook is a rising high school senior at the Peddie School in Hightstown, New Jersey.  She’s interning with SOHP to further her interest in history and Southern culture.  Regan hopes to study history and political science in college, where she intends to continue rowing.




Elisabeth Moore is a third year PhD student at West Virginia University in Morgantown, West Virginia where she studies under Dr. Ken Fones-Wolf. She received her BA in history from Gardner-Webb University in 2016 and is a western North Carolina native. Elisabeth’s dissertation research analyzes the racialization of tourism in Southern Appalachia during the mid-twentieth century and the trade’s impact on the intersections of race and class in the region. She is particularly interested in the industry’s impact on urban renewal efforts, the growth of early agri-tourism and the intentional manufacturing of a racialized folk culture within the region. She is incredibly excited to work at the SOHP where she hopes to become a better practitioner of oral history, local history, and community engagement.

Zobeida Chaffee Valdes is a rising senior at Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota. She is studying history with a focus on medieval and Renaissance studies, and minoring in archaeology. In the future, Zobeida hopes to enter a library science program with a concentration in archival studies. She has an interest in digital exhibits and has worked in the field of digital humanities.