I was educated at the University of Chicago and at Brown University where I received my doctorate in early American history. I joined the FSU history department in 1998 and since then have taught a range of courses in U.S. history, Native American history, the history of colonial North America, and the history of the Pacific in the age of Cook. My most recent book (published in the spring of 2007) is a biography of the Connecticut-born traveler, John Ledyard. Ledyard grew up in colonial Connecticut, briefly attended Dartmouth College (initially a school for training missionaries to the Native peoples of the Northeast), was a member of Captain Cook's final Pacific voyage, traversed the Russian Empire in 1788, and in 1789 died while preparing for an expedition to the headwaters of the Niger River. What appealed to me about Ledyard's particular story--in addition to the man's obviously remarkable life--is the intimate glimpse it affords of the workings of empire in the age of the American Revolution. Among my current research interests are the history of the monetization of human life and the relationship between politics and technology in the age of republican revolutions.