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The mission of the Public History Center is to foster the public’s broader understanding of the importance of history and to forge closer relationships between Christopher Newport and the world-class museums, archives, and public history agencies located throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. We promote innovation and entrepreneurial approaches for communicating history to the public. Here’s what we do:


  • Match Christopher Newport student interns with world-class public history agencies
  • Generate student interest and professional opportunities in public history and museum management
  • Foster cooperation among public historians and the academic community
  • Identify and document museum best practices and assist with dissemination
  • Explore social media opportunities related to attracting and engaging history enthusiasts and the broader public
  • Conduct research on challenges faced by public history agencies in the 21st century


Dr. Sheri Shuck-Hall Dr. Sheri Marie Shuck-Hall, Director 

Dr. Shuck-Hall created Christopher Newport University’s public history program in 2006. She has directed the student internship program with Hampton Roads’ public history agencies for a decade. Her book-length analyses of Southeastern Indians were published by both the University of Nebraska Press and the University of Oklahoma Press. In addition, she assisted tribal advocates to secure claims to ancestral lands, and undertook museum curatorial assignments on Southeastern Indian tribes. Her research specialties include Colonial and Revolutionary America, American Indian history, and Public History.

Dr. Thomas Hall Dr. Thomas Hall, Associate Director 

Dr. Hall’s research on determinants and trends in museum and public history attendance has been funded by the U.S. National Endowment for the Arts. His private sector experience includes management consulting for KPMG and PriceWaterhouseCoopers. His research has been published in the Journal of Software, the Journal of Corporate Finance, and the Journal of Economic Issues; his survey research work has been downloaded hundreds of times.

For more information, visit the Public History Center that is supported by the CNU Department of History.