Denise Meringolo, Associate Professor (Ph.D. George Washington University)
Denise Meringolo is a scholar-practitioner in the field of public history. She teaches courses in community-based public history practice, material culture, and visual culture. Her book Museums, Monuments, and National Parks: Toward a New Genealogy of Public History (University of Massachusetts, 2012) won the 2013 National Council on Public History prize for the best book in the field. She is currently working on several projects. She is leading a collaborative study, Radical Roots: Civic Engagement, Public History, and a Tradition of Social Justice Activism, designed to broaden the accepted genealogy of public history. The project aims to identify new historical precedents for core values and practices that define the field, particularly those associated with civic engagement. The project is also designed to advance new critical perspectives on the ways in which those values and practices have been put to the task of advancing social justice, in the past and today. In addition, Dr. Meringolo established a digital collection project, Baltimore Uprising 2015, that allows individuals to preserve images, videos, and stories about the protests that erupted after the death of Freddie Gray in police custody in April 2015. She is working with the Maryland Historical Society to expand the project’s collecting efforts and to facilitate the development of community-designed digital exhibitions. Finally, Dr. Meringolo partners with Baltimore Heritage, a local preservation advocacy organization, to develop content for the app Explore Baltimore Heritage, which allows users to take self-guided walking tours of Baltimore neighborhoods. Prior to joining the Department of History faculty, Dr. Meringolo worked in numerous public history institutions, including the National Museum of American History, the Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington and the Accokeek Foundation at Piscataway Park. She is a member of the Board of Directors of the National Council on Public History and chair of local arrangements for the organization’s 2016 Annual Meeting in Baltimore. Click here and here to watch interviews with Prof Meringolo.