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Economics | Washington Area Economic History Seminar

A Brief History

Founded in the mid-1970s by Cynthia Taft Morris, the Washington Area Economic History Seminar (WAEHS) holds monthly meetings throughout the academic year. The seminar traditionally meets on the first Friday of the month and invites prominent economic historians to present their current work. Past speakers include Nobel laureates Douglass North and Robert Fogel.

The late Cynthia Taft Morris, who taught for many years at American University, hosted the seminars at AU before it expanded to include other sites such as the University of Maryland, College Park, the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Johns Hopkins University, and George Mason University.

The current organizers of the WAEHS are Mary Hansen and Gabriel Mathy (AU), Noel Johnson and Mark Koyama (GMU), and David Mitch (UMBC).


Fall 2016 Speakers

September 30, 2016: Christian Dippel, UCLA
Location:George Mason University
Note: This seminar will be earlier than usual; please watch for the announcement

November 4, 2016:Amanda Gregg, Middlebury College
Location: American University


Past Speakers 

Spring 2016 

February 5th, 2016: Nic Ziebarth, University of Iowa
Location: American University

February 26, 2016: John Tang, Australian National University
Location: University of Maryland, College Park

April 8th, 2016: Murat Iyigun, University of Colorado-Boulder
Location: George Mason University

Fall 2015 

October 9th, 2015: Matthew Jaremski, Colgate University
Location: American University

November 6th, 2015: Suresh Naidu, Columbia University
Location: University of Maryland

December 11th, 2015: Eric Chaney, Harvard University
Location: Mercatus Center, George Mason University

Spring 2015 

February 13, 2015: Marc Law (University of Vermont)
Location: Mercatus Center, George Mason University

March 6, 2015: Greg Clark (University of California at Davis)
Location: American University

March 27, 2015: Evan Roberts (University of Minnesota)
Location: American University

May 1, 2015: Sascha Becker (University of Warwick/UCLA)
Location: Mercatus Center, George Mason University

Fall 2014 

October 3, 2014: Mary Tone Rodgers (SUNY Oswego)
Location: American University

November 14, 2014: Nico Voigtlaender, UCLA
Location: Mercatus Center, George Mason University

December 5, 2014: Lorena Walsh (Emerita, Colonial Williamsburg Foundation)
Location: University of Maryland, College Park


Visit the archive to view past speakers and presentation topics from 2001-2009. Speakers who presented from Fall 2009-Spring 2013 can be found here.


Christian Dippel

University of California-Los Angeles

September 30, 2016
Details to be announced


In Memoriam

Cynthia Taft Morris, founder of the WAEHS, passed away in July of 2013 at the age of 85. Cynthia had a long and distinguished career and will be greatly missed. To read more about her, including a remembrance, see the Economic History Association's tribute page here.

To read tributes and remembrances of Cynthia submitted by former students, colleagues, and friends, click here. If you would like to submit a note, please send it to for publication.