William and Mary

Lindsay Keiter

ABD History

Email: [[e|lmkeit]]
Current Research: Marriage as a social and financial institution in the North and the South between 1750 and the Civil War.


Lindsay specializes in the history of gender and of women in the eighteenth, nineteenth, and early-twentieth centuries. She attended the Pennsylvania State University, where she graduated with honors in History and Women's Studies in 2006. Her undergraduate honors thesis explored the history of and the use of gendered rhetoric by the Niagara Movement, an African-American civil rights organization founded by W.E.B. Du Bois, from 1905-1910. For her master's thesis, Lindsay probed the development of companionate marriage in the Early Republic, focusing on John Hartwell and Louisa Maxwell Holmes Cocke to uncover the tensions between ideology and practice. She is currently building on this work to explore how marriage operated as a financial institution, a social practice, and an intimate relationship between 1750 and 1860. She is comparing Pennsylvania, Virginia, and South Carolina to determine the effects of slavery on the acceptance of new ideas and practices about marriage.

Awards, Fellowships and Publications
  • 2014-2015 Dean’s Dissertation Completion Fellowship, Lyon G. Tyler Department of History, the College of William & Mary.
  • 2014 Guion Griffis Johnson Visiting Scholar Grant, the Southern Historical Collection, the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC.
  • 2014 Lewis P. Jones Visiting Research Fellowship, the South Caroliniana Library, the University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC.
  • 2013 Dean’s Prize for Graduate Student Scholarship on Women, the College of William & Mary.
  • 2012 Gilder Lehrman Short-term Research Fellowship at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.
  • 2012 François André Michaux Fund Resident Research Fellowship at the American Philosophical Society.
  • 2011 Frances Lewis Fellowship in Gender and Women's Studies, the Virginia Historical Society.


  • 2014 “Marriage and Markets: Dowry Patterns and Economic Complexity in Early America,” Histories of American Capitalism Conference, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, November 6-8 (forthcoming).
  • 2014 “‘The consideration due to him as the head of his family:’ Hostility to Women’s Separate Estates in the Early National South,” Society for Historians of the Early American Republic, Philadelphia, July 17-20.
  • 2013 “One Flesh, Two Estates: Patriarchy, Property, and Power in the Southern Early American Republic,” Social Science History Association, The Palmer House Hilton, Chicago, November 21-23.
  • 2013 “Erasing Indiscretion: Memory and Mutilation in the Diary of Louisa Cocke,” Traces of Early America: An Interdisciplinary Graduate Student Conference, The McNeil Center for Early American Studies, Philadelphia, September 26-28.
  • 2013 “‘I greatly fear that some interference will become necessary to resque her:’ Out-of-court Responses to Spousal Abuse in the Early Republic,” Society for Historians of the Early American Republic, Saint Louis University, St. Louis, Missouri, July 18-21.