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Dr. Amy Mitchell-Cook is the department's maritime historian. She brings to the department an interdisciplinary background with a B.A. in anthropology from the University of Florida ('90), an M.A. in Maritime Studies from East Carolina University ('94) and a Ph.D. in history from Penn State University ('05). Dr. Mitchell-Cook worked as a nautical archaeologist on shipwrecks throughout the United States, Bermuda and West Africa. She was an archaeologist and historian for the Memphis-based cultural resources management company, Panamerican Consultants and was Field Conservator for the La Belle shipwreck project, a 16th-century French vessel that wrecked off of Matagorda Bay, Texas. The project was featured in a NOVA special and in National Geographic. Since graduating from Penn State, Mitchell-Cook worked at the Coast Guard Historians Office in Washington D.C. and was a Visiting Assistant Professor at Mississippi State University.
Dr. Mitchell-Cook's research interest is early American shipwreck narratives. She has presented her findings in several international conferences and has published a chapter on masculinity in Pirates, Jack Tar and Memory (Mystic Seaport, 2007). She recently published an article on women in shipwreck in Coriolis: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Maritime Research and has another article under review in the International Journal of Nautical Archaeology. She recently revised her larger manuscript for the University of South Carolina Press. In addition to these projects, Mitchell-Cook's interests include analysis of Pensacola's maritime community from 1850-1880. She presented initial findings at the 9th Maritime Heritage Conference this past October in Baltimore, MD.
Dr. Mitchell-Cook has opened the door to new student opportunities with a tall-ships experience aboard the Niagara, a replica War of 1812 ship that sails on Lake Erie. She also is on the board of Friends of St. Michael's Cemetery. Each year her students research an individual buried in St. Michael's and present their findings in the Pensacola News Journal as well as in person during the cemetery's, Get In the Spirit Day. Her graduate students also have the opportunity to publish book reviews in the Northern Mariner as part of her course on North American Seafaring.