R. Volney Riser, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of History
Station 22
Wallace Hall 310B
(205) 652-3463
  • Ph.D., University of Alabama, 2005
  • M.A., University of Alabama, 2000
  • B.A., Florida State University, 1998
  • B.A., Florida State University, 1995
Employment Date: 2005
Teaching / Research Interests:
  • African-American History
  • Civil and Voting Rights
  • Gilded Age and Progressive Era
  • Reconstruction
  • New South
  • United States Legal and Constitutional History
    • Completed:
    • In Progress:
      • The Litigious Mr. Washington: Booker T. Washington, the Courts, and the Battle Against Jim Crow. (under contract, University of Georgia Press)
      • Alabama’s Supreme Court and Legal Institutions: A History (with Tony A. Freyer, Paul M. Pruitt, Timothy W. Dixon, and Howard P. Walthall).
    • Published:
      • "Disfranchisement, the U.S. Constitution, and the Courts: Alabama’s 1901 Constitutional Convention Debates the Grandfather Clause." (forthcoming, American Journal of Legal History)
      • "'The Milk in the Cocoanut': Booker T. Washington, Theodore Roosevelt, and the Fear of Conspiracy in Alabama’s 1901 Constitutional Ratification Referendum." Southern Historian 26 (Spring 2005): 30-54 (awarded the 2005 Charles G. Summersell "Best Article" award.
      • "The Burdens of Being White: Empire and Disfranchisement." Alabama Law Review 53, no. 1 (Fall 2001): 243-272.
    • In Progress:
      • "Williams v. Mississippi: Widely-noted, Little-studied, and Misunderstood."
      • "Disfranchisement, the Disfranchisers, and the Hawaiian Organic Act of 1900: 'Northern Acquiescence' Revisited." (under review)
    • Michael A. Ross, Justice of Shattered Dreams: Samuel Freeman Miller and the Supreme Court During the Civil War Era. (Southern Historian 25 [Spring 2004]: 109-110).
    • David W. Blight, Race and Reunion: The Civil War in American Memory. (Southern Historian 25 [Spring 2004]: 107-108).
    • Charles B. Dew, Apostles of Disunion: Southern Secession Commissioners and the Causes of the Civil War. (Southern Historian 24 [Spring 2003]: 65-66).
    • Michael Perman, Struggle for Mastery: Disfranchisement in the South, 1888-1908. (Southern Historian 23 [Spring 2002]:127-129).
    • J. C. A. Stagg, ed., The Papers of James Madison, Presidential Series, Vol. 4: 5 November 1811-9 July 1812. Southern Historian 22 [Spring 2001]: 135-136).
Awards and Honors:

Alabama Historical Association
American Historical Association
American Society for Legal History
Association for the Study of African American Life and History
Organization of American Historians
Southern Historical Association