Carroll Van West, Ph.D.

Director

of

the Center for Historic Preservation

at

Middle Tennessee State University

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Carroll Van West is the Director of the Center for Historic Preservation at Middle Tennessee State University. His role at the Center brings the responsibilities of directing the Tennessee Civil War National Heritage Area, serving as the Editor-in-Chief of The Tennessee Encyclopedia of History and Culture, and serving as director of the CHP’s Teaching with Primary Sources Across Tennessee, a program of the Library of Congress. West has been at the Center for Historic Preservation since 1985. As a professor in MTSU’s history department, West teaches courses in historic preservation, American architectural history, American material culture studies, and state and local history. He has directed to completion over 100 M.A. theses and 30 doctoral dissertations of MTSU graduate students, who work at universities, agencies, and history institutions across the nation. His preservation focus is on properties associated with the Civil Rights Movement, the Civil War, rural areas, marginalized communities, and the southern music industries. His most recent National Register nominations include RCA Studio A in Nashville and FAME Studio (co-authored) in Muscle Shoals, AL, and the King Studios (co-authored) in Cincinnati, OH.

Since 2012 West has served as the University of Virginia Visiting Scholar of the Summer Institute at the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts at Old Salem, NC. In 2013 Governor Bill Haslam appointed West as the Tennessee State Historian, a position he continues under current Governor Bill Lee.

West has published in both western and southern history, architecture, material culture, and historic preservation. His recent book is Nashville Architecture: A Guide to the City (University of Tennessee Press, 2015). Other books include A History of the Arts in Tennessee (University of Tennessee Press, 2004); Trial and Triumph: Readings in Tennessee’s African-American Past (Tennessee, 2002); Tennessee’s New Deal Landscape (Tennessee, 2001), the first such statewide book to focus on the many New Deal-era structures, buildings, and parks; the edited anthology Tennessee History: The Land, The People, and The Culture (Tennessee, 1998); and The Tennessee Encyclopedia of History and Culture (Tennessee Historical Society, 1998). His initial university press books addressed community development and landscapes. Capitalism on the Frontier: The Transformation of Billings and the Yellowstone Valley in the 19th Century was published by the University of Nebraska Press in 1993; and Tennessee’s Historic Landscapes was published by the University of Tennessee Press in 1995.

West also created a blog to discuss the changes in Montana’s historic landscape over the last thirty years, part of an ongoing partnership with the state historic preservation office and the Montana Preservation Alliance. Its address is www.montanahistoriclandscape.com. A digital history project that he launched, titled Trials, Triumphs, and Transformations, recently received the 2018 Honorable Mention for digital humanities projects from the American Studies Association. Its address is www.dsi.mtsu.edu.

 

Selected Publications

Online

 

In Print

Books Authored by Carroll Van West:
a_history_of_tennessee_arts_van_west-resize A History of Tennessee Arts: Creating Traditions and Expanding Horizons
University of Tennessee Press, 2004
• Tennessee’s first comprehensive history of the arts.
Capitalism-resizeCapitalism on the Frontier: The Transformation of Billings and the Yellowstone Valley in the 19th Century
University of Nebraska Press, 1993
Images-of-Billings-resizeImages of Billings: A Photographic History of Billings, Montana
Western Heritage Center Press, 1990
TN_Agriculture_Cent_Farms_Perspective-resizeTennessee Agriculture: A Century Farms Perspective
Tennessee Department of Agriculture, 1987 • A descriptive history of 783 Century Farms
TN-Hist-LandscapesTennessee’s Historic Landscapes: A Traveler’s Guide
University of Tennessee Press, 1995 • A study of history and architecture in Tennessee
TN-New-Deal-Landscapes-resizeTennessee’s New Deal Landscape
University of Tennessee Press, 2001 • The first statewide book on the many New Deal-era structures, buildings, and parks
Travelers-Companion-to-Montana-History-resizeTraveler’s Companion to Montana History
Montana Historical Society Press, 1986 • An analysis of twenty-three cultural landscapes in Montana
Books with Contributions by Carroll Van West:
Rocky-Mtns-resize“Rocky Mountain Architecture”
The Rocky Mountain Region: The Greenwood Encyclopedia of American Regional Cultures
Greenwood Press, 2005
We-Shall-Independent-Be-resize“Sacred Spaces of Faith, Community, and Resistance: Rural African American Churches in Jim Crow Tennessee”
“We Shall Independent Be”: African American Place Making and the Struggle to Claim Space in the United States
University Press of Colorado, 2008
Books edited by Carroll Van West:
Trial-and-Triumph-resizeTrial and Triumph: Readings in Tennessee’s African-American Past
University of Tennessee Press, 2002 • The first such textbook on Tennessee’s African American history in over 20 years
TN_Women_in_the_Civil_War-resizeTennessee in the Civil War: The Best of the Tennessee Historical Quarterly
Tennessee Historical Society
TN-Enc-Hist-Cult-resizeThe Tennessee Encyclopedia of History and Culture
• Tennessee Historical Society 1998 Co-winner of the Tennessee History Book Award
• Recipient of AASLH Award of Merit in 1999
TN-Hist-Land-People-Culture-resizeTennessee History: The Land, The People, and The Culture
University of Tennessee Press, 1998

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