Participant Info

First Name
Last Name
McGillicuddy Humanities Center, University of Maine; Theodore Roosevelt Center and Digital Library
Website URL
Red Summer, race riots, Urban History, Black History, Women's History, travel history, Gilded Age, Progressive Era, Theodore Roosevelt, community development, civil rights, labor history, hobos, Southern history, Chicago history, historic preservation, archives, museums, digital humanities, public history
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Personal Info

About Me

I currently work as the Humanities Specialist for the McGillicuddy Humanities Center at the University of Maine, where I oversee the research of 8 undergraduate fellows, plan humanities events, and organize interdisciplinary collaborations between scholars at all levels. I also serve as the Research and Outreach Coordinator for the Theodore Roosevelt Center and Digital Library.

As a public historian, I have consulted on a variety of history projects nationwide, from museum exhibits to PBS programs. I strive to connect the public with the tools necessary to better understand, preserve and share the history around them. Although best known for my work on the Red Summer, my current research is about the intellectual lives of hobos, and separately, the history of experimental traveling schools of the early twentieth century.  My research has been cited or featured as a resource by the National Archives, National Council on Public History, PBS, National History Day and among others.

I received my BA from UNC Chapel Hill, where I graduated summa cum laude and with honors, with a double major in American Studies and Urban History. I received my MA in Public History, with additional work towards a PhD, from Loyola University Chicago. I also received a graduate certificate from Duke University in Nonprofit Management.

Recent Publications

Sieber, Karen. “The Hidden Story of When Two Black College Students Were Tarred and Feathered,”  The Conversation, February 8, 2021.

Gaddis, Elijah and Karen Sieber. “History, Memory, and Community in the Redeveloped Mill,” Interpreting Labor History at Historic SitesWorking Class in American History Series. Champaign, IL: University of Illinois Press, 2022.

InterviewWorking Historians podcast, October 15, 2020.

Sieber, Karen. “An Act of Tactical History: Creating an Archive of the Red Summer of 1919.” Perspectives on History. American Historical Association, June 3, 2019.

Sieber, Karen. “Experiential Education and Classrooms on Wheels: The Omnibus College’s Road to Knowledge.” Perspectives on History. American Historical Association, September 3, 2019.

Sieber, Karen. “The Brandywine Valley Oral History Project,” The Oral History Review, Volume 46, Issue 1, Winter/Spring 2019, Pages 201–203.

Media Coverage
Country Focus
United States
Expertise by Geography
United States
Expertise by Chronology
5, 6, 8
Expertise by Topic
American Presidents, Family, Food History, Gender, Higher Ed, Labor, Libraries & Archives, Local & Regional, Museums, Public History, Race, Urban History, Women, World War I