Walter T. Howard, PhD

Professor of History

Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania

114 Old Science Hall


Hangin' with my three sons on Panama City Beach [August 2009].

Who does it look like won this race? ........................................................................................... The genius sleeps!

Bloomsburg University

BU History Department

Curriculum Vitae

Communist History Network Newsletter Online

Historians of American Communism

American Communism and Anticommunism: A Historian’s Bibliography and Guide to the Literature

Black Communists Speak on Scottsboro: A Documentary History [Temple University Press]

We Shall Be Free! Black Cmmunist Protest in Seven Voices [Temple University Press]


Syllabus Spring 2013 42-121-03 MWF 11am to 11:50am

Syllabus Fall 2013 42-121-04 MWF 2pm to 2:50pm

[1/28-2/1]: Introduction to the Course 
Part One: 1/30 to 2/22 [Week 1-4]: Columbus to American Independence

Reading Assignments in Zinn:

Chapter 1, "Columbus, the Indians, and Human Progress" covers early Native American civilization in North America and the Bahamas, the genocide and enslavement committed by the crew of Christopher Columbus, and incidents of violent colonization by early settlers. Topics include the Arawaks, Bartolome de las Casas, the Aztecs, H. Cortes, Pizarro, Powhatan, the Pequot, the Narragansett, Metacom, King Philip's War, and the Iroquois.

Chapter 2, "Drawing the Color Line" addresses the early enslavement of Africans and servitude of poor British people in the Thirteen Colonies. Zinn writes of the methods by which he says racism was artificially created in order to enforce the economic system. He argues that racism is not natural because there are recorded instances of camaraderie and cooperation between black slaves and white servants in escaping from and in opposing their subjugation.

The Last of the Mohicans 1

The Last of the Mohicans 2

The Last of the Mohicans 3

Chapter 3, "Persons of Mean and Vile Condition" describes Bacon's Rebellion, the economic conditions of the poor in the colonies, and opposition to their poverty.

Chapter 4, "Tyranny is Tyranny" covers the movement for "leveling" (economic equality) in the colonies and the causes of the American Revolution. Zinn argues that the Founding Fathers agitated for war to distract the people from their own economic problems and stop popular movements, a strategy that he claims the country's leaders would continue to use in the future.

Chapter 5, "A Kind of Revolution" covers the war and resistance to participating in war, the effects on the Native American people, and the continued inequalities in the new United States. When the land of veterans of the Revolutionary War was seized for non-payment of taxes, it led to instances of resistance to the government, as in the case of Shays' Rebellion. Zinn wrote that "governments - including the government of the United States - are not neutral... they represent the dominant economic interests, and... their constitutions are intended to serve these interests."

Part Two: 2/25-3/15 [Week 5-7]: Federalist Era to the Mexican War

Reading Assignments in Zinn:

Chapter 6, "The Intimately Oppressed" describes resistance to inequalities in the lives of women in the early years of the U.S. Zinn tells the stories of women who resisted the status quo, including Polly Baker, Anne Hutchinson, Mary Dyer, Amelia Bloomer, Catharine Beecher, Emma Willard, Harriot Hunt, Elizabeth Blackwell, Lucy Stone, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Margaret Fuller, Sarah Grimke, Angelina Grimke, Dorothea Dix, Frances Wright, Lucretia Mott, and Sojourner Truth.

Chapter 7, "As Long As Grass Grows or Water Runs" discusses 19th century conflicts between the U.S. government and Native Americans (such as the Seminole Wars) and Indian removal, especially during the administrations of Andrew Jackson and Martin Van Buren.

Chapter 8, "We Take Nothing By Conquest, Thank God" [Mexican War]

Week 8: Spring Break 3/18-3/22 No Class

Part Three: 3/25-4/19 [Week 9-12]: Slavery, Abolitionism and the Coming of the Civil War

Reading Assignments in Zinn: Chapter 9, "Slavery Without Submission, Emancipation Without Freedom"
Documentary: The Abolitionists
Video Transcripts for “The Abolitionists”:

Part Four: 4/22-5/10 [Week 13-15]: Civil War and Reconstruction

Reading Assignment in Zinn:
Chapter 10, "The Other Civil War"

Documentary on Abraham and Mary Lincoln: Video Transcripts:

Final Exam Essay: Due 5/17

Resources for the Course 42-121

Syllabus Fall 2013 42-122-05 MW 3pm to 4:15pm


U.S. Labor History Fall 2012

Syllabus: 42-472 US Labor History [Spring 2013]

Introduction: The American Labor Movement

Dray Ch 2

Dray Ch 3

Dray Ch 4

Week 8: Spring Break 3/18-3/22  No Class
Midterm Exam Due [3/25] 

Final Exam Essay: Due 5/17

Final Exam Essay: Due last day of class



42-208 Contemporary Issues [Summer 2012]


Syllabus Summer 2012 42-121

Syllabus Spring 2012 42-122-03

Spring 2012 42-122-03 US 1877 to the Present [MWF 2-2:50pm]

Final Exam: Tuesday, May 8, 2012, 8am-10am


Syllabus: 42-472 US Labor History [Spring 2012]

Spring 2012 42-472 US Labor History [MWF 11-11:50pm]

Final Exam: Wens. May 9, 2012, Wens. 10: 30am

42-210 Values in Conflict


Pennsylvania History

Pennsylvania: 1865-1945

Pennsylvania, 1945-Present

Lectures: African History/Black Atlantic

42-208 Contemporary Issues [Summer 2011]


42-210 Values in Conflict [Summer 2011]