Megan R Brett

Megan R Brett

U.S. History: Early America, family strategies, family history

Megan R. Brett is a historian focusing on the Early American Republic (1780-1830), the long eighteenth century in the British Atlantic, material culture, and families as networks. She received her PhD in 2022 from George Mason University. Her dissertation examined the intersection of family strategies and the formation of national identity for Americans abroad in the post revolutionary period, using the Maury family of Virginia and Liverpool as a case study.

She is a working digital public historian. Through her position as a Digital History Associate at the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University, she has contributed to content-focused projects such as the award-winning Histories of the National Mall website, the Papers of the War Department community transcription project, and the podcast Consolation Prize. Her work as a digital public historian is inspired by Roy Rosenzweig's wish to "democratize the study of the past".


Selected Publications

With Mills Kelly and Jessica Otis. “Reframing the Conversation: Digital Humanities, Disabilities, and Accessibility.” In Debates in the Digital Humanities 2022, edited by Matthew K. Gold and Lauren F. Klein. Minneapolis; London: University of Minnesota Press, 2022. (forthcoming)

Producer, Consolation Prize (a podcast), 2020-present. 

With Miriam Posner. “Creating an Omeka Exhibit.” The Programming Historian. February 24, 2016. Last modified May 25, 2017.

“Topic Modeling: A Basic Introduction.” Journal of Digital Humanities 2:1 (Winter 2012)

Grants and Fellowships

Elsie Van Dyck Dewitt Scholarship Fund, Vassar College, 2019-2020.


Ph.D. in History, George Mason University. 

M.Sc. with Distinction in Scottish Studies, University of Edinburgh.

B.S. in History, Vassar College


Recent Presentations

““Satisfied with their native land”: Young American Expatriates in the Early Republic.” Annual Meeting of the Society of Historians of the Early American Republic. Cambridge, MA, July 19, 2019.

Panelist, “The Impact of New Media on Our Research and Its Communication in the Twenty-First Century.” Virginia Consortium of Early Americanists Annual Meeting, Richmond, VA, January 26, 2019.

“Discovery and Image Description: Accessibility, Archives, and Pedagogy.” Digital Archives in the Commonwealth Summit, Fairfax, VA, November 30, 2018.

Panelist, “The Power of Online Exhibits in High Impact Research: Omeka and Preserve the Baltimore Uprising 2015.” American University Library Conference for High Impact Research, Washington, DC, May 14, 2018.

“Dividing Families: Rhetoric and Relationships in the Settlement of a Virginia Estate.” CUNY Early American Republic Seminar Graduate Student Conference, New York, New York, May 12 2017.

Panelist, “Mentoring Women: The Conversation Continues.” Annual Meeting of the Southern Historical Association, Little Rock, Arkansas, November 14, 2015.

“Two Weddings and a Burial: Kinship, Identity, and Americans Abroad in the Early National Period.” Triennial Conference of the Southern Association for Women Historians, June 12, 2105.

Panelist, “Blogs, Writing Groups, Digital Classrooms, and More:  Managing Your Academic Career in the Online Era.” Triennial Conference of the Southern Association for Women Historians, June 12, 2105.

“Lesser-Known Protests on the National Mall,” Historical Society of Washington, D.C., Annual Conference, November 2013.