Lisa Goff

Lisa Goff

Associate Professor of English and American Studies, Director of Institute for Public History

412 Bryan Hall

Office Hours: Friday, 2-5 p.m. (Virtual)
Class Schedule: Tu/Th 12:30-1:45, Tu 3:30-6:00


-University of Virginia
Ph.D., History
-Medill School of Journalism, Northwestern University
-College of William and Mary in Virginia
BA with Honors, English Literature



Cultural history and landscapes, migration, public history, point-of-view journalism.
Prof. Goff is also the Director of UVA’s Institute for Public History.



Shantytown, U.S.A.: Forgotten Landscapes of the Working Poor, Harvard University Press, 2016. A CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title.



Take Back the Archive,, 2014-2019
A digital archive of the history of sexual violence at the University of Virginia.
Finding Virginia’s Freetowns,” a digital database of Reconstruction-era Black settlements in central Virginia



  • “Under cover: clandestine removals of Confederate statues thwart opportunities for anti-racist public,” PLATFORM, September 2021
  • “In path of pipeline, descendants of freedmen fight to preserve historic Virginia landscape,” PLATFORM, June 27, 2019 
  • “‘Something pretty out of very little’: Graniteville Mill Village, 1848,” March 2019, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians




  • Montpelier: Objects of Memory, University Of Virginia Press, 2024
  • “Empire of Ice Cream: Porcelain Dessert Services 1720-1840,” chapter in forthcoming 2023 Routledge Handbook of American Material Culture



  • C19 The Society of Nineteenth-Century Americanists annual meeting, Coral Gables, FL, March 2022, individual paper: “Making space for a free Black public: “freetowns” in Orange County, Virginia, 1850-1920” 
  • “Public Memory and the Daughters Of Zion Cemetery,” on “Cemeteries, Slavery And History” panel, President’s Commission on Slavery and the University, 2017 symposium, “Universities, Slavery, Public Memory, and the Built Landscape,” Charlottesville, 10/19/17
  • Conference panel, C19 – The Society of Nineteenth-Century Americanists, Annual Meeting, University Park, Pa, March 2016, individual paper: “Shantytown, NYC: Forgotten Landscapes Of The Urban Working Poor”
  • Conference panel, National Women’s Studies Association annual meeting, Milwaukee, November 2015, panel “Feminism & Archives: Negotiating Precarity”: “#Takebackthearchive”
  • Vernacular Architecture Forum annual conference, Chicago, June 3-7, 2015:  “Housing and Identity” panel, “Racial Refuge: African-American Shantytowns Before and After Reconstruction”
  • Invited lecture, University of Alabama, English and AMST departments, April 2014:  “Shantytowns, Forgotten Landscapes of the American Working Classes”
  • Conference panel, American Society of Environmental Historians annual meeting, panel “Shantytowns,” San Francisco, March 2014: “ ‘Calling Me Back’: Shantytowns in 1930s Popular Culture”


  • Karsh Institute of Democracy, Working Group Grant,“Home Places: Mapping Black Virginia,” 2023-2024
  • Diversity and Inclusion Grants 2023-2024, 2022-2023, College of Arts and Sciences
  • 3 Cavaliers research awards, Office of the VP for Research, UVA, 2021-2023, 2018-2019
  • UVA’s Nominee, Whiting Foundation Public Engagement Fellowship, 2018
  • Diversity and Inclusion Grant 2018-2019, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Mead Foundation, Mead Honored Faculty 2015-2016, Dream Idea award


  • Public Service Award, UVA, 2023
  • Monticello Dinner Series Participant, Seven Society, UVA, 2023