Patrick Henry History Fellowship ($45,000, nine months, plus housing and benefits)

Adam Goodheart's picture

The Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience at Washington College invites applications for its full-time residential writing fellowship, which supports outstanding writing on American history and culture by both scholars and nonacademic authors. The Center’s Patrick Henry Fellowship includes a $45,000 stipend, health benefits, faculty privileges, a book allowance, and a nine-month residency (during the academic year 2023-2024) in a historic 18th-century house in Chestertown, Md.

Applicants should have a significant project currently in progress – a book, film, oral history archive, podcast series, museum exhibition, or similar work. The project should address the history and/or legacy – broadly defined – of the U.S. founding era and/or the nation’s founding ideas. It might focus directly on early America, or on the myriad ways the questions that preoccupied the nation’s founding generation have shaped America’s later history. Innovative work that contributes to ongoing national conversations about America’s past and present, with the potential to reach a wide public, is particularly sought.

Please note that neither the fellowship, Washington College, nor the Starr Center have any political agenda or orientation. We encourage a broad reading of such terms as “founders” and “founding ideas.” Our past fellows have focused on topics ranging as broadly as the early history of the slave trade, American religious minorities, and the LGBTQ rights movement.

The Starr Center, located at Washington College in Chestertown, Md., explores the American experience in all its diversity and complexity, seeks creative approaches to illuminating the past, and inspires thoughtful conversation informed by history. The 2023-24 Patrick Henry Fellow will maintain full-time residence in Chestertown throughout the term of the award, although short-term research travel is permitted. (Chestertown is located on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, approximately 90 minutes from Washington and Philadelphia, and three hours from New York City.) In addition to use of the fellowship residence, the fellow will also receive office space in the 18th-century waterfront Custom House, home of the Starr Center.  The fellow will teach an undergraduate seminar at Washington College in the spring semester and give at least one public lecture or workshop related to his or her work.  The fellowship must begin before September 15, 2023.  For more information, please visit the Starr Center’s website.

Deadline for the 2023-24 fellowship is December 15, 2022. Applications should include the following:

  1. A cover letter;
  2. The applicant’s curriculum vitae, including a list of past publications, as well as the names and telephone numbers of at least three references;
  3. At least one substantial sample of the candidate’s writing (published or unpublished);
  4. A short (1-2 paragraph) description of a course that the candidate might teach;
  5. A brief but persuasive narrative description of the work-in-progress, its potential contributions to ongoing national conversations or debates, and the candidate’s plan for their fellowship year. 

Applications may be submitted via email on a single pdf document to: All email correspondence must include applicant’s full name in the subject line.

The Starr Center at Washington College has a number of opportunities for academics, authors, historians, creatives, and more, including fellowships as well as events. We'd love to make this network aware of all that we offer.

-Adam Goodheart