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Barrie Blatchford
Environmental Historian

 

Columbia University

PhD, MPhil

University of British Columbia

MA, BA (Hons)

I research the environmental history of nineteenth and twentieth century America. I am particularly interested in the historical interaction of people and animals. Sometimes I write about these things — see below!

I also love dogs.

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Research Interests

My dissertation explores animal acclimatization - that is, the intentional introduction of foreign wild animals to new areas - in America. It argues that it was far greater in scope, magnitude, and meaning than historians have so far appreciated.

 

​I'm also working on two other projects.

One is a study of the American commercial animal trade and its attendant parts: exotic pet ownership, commercial animal dealers, laws and regulations, exploitation of developing nations, et cetera.

 

​The second is a study of the American fur industry AFTER the colonial and early republican periods. Provisionally entitled "Fashion Victims" I explore the longstanding anti-fur, anti-animal cruelty movement as well as the horrible toll the popularity of fur garments has taken on wildlife in the last 150 years.

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Publications
(Selected)

Barrie Ryne Blatchford, "'Make the Desert Blossom Like the Rose': Animal Acclimatization, Settler Colonialism, and the Construction of Oregon's Nature," Oregon Historical Quarterly 122, 3 (2021): 214-249.

* Winner of the biennial 2022 Fishel-Calhoun Article Prize from the Society for Historians of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era.

Barrie Ryne Blatchford, "Dispatches from 'Anthropoid Ellis Island': New York City's More-Than-Human History," The Gotham Center for New York History, March 25, 2021.

https://www.gothamcenter.org/blog/dispatches-from-anthropoid-ellis-island

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