Vicki Howard

Areas of Interest
U.S. Business History
Gender and U.S. Women's History
20th Century U.S. Social and Cultural History

B.A. University of British Columbia
M.A. San Francisco State University
Ph.D. University of Texas, Austin

The Rise and Fall of Main Street: Independent Department Stores and their Customers, 1890-2005, manuscript in progress.

Brides, Inc: American Weddings and the Business of Tradition. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2006.

Recent Articles:
“A History of Department Store Advertising in Newspapers, Radio, and Television, 1890-1960s. The Journal of Historical Research in Marketing. Special Issue on Retailing. January 2010.

“The Bridal Business: Teaching Strategies for Business History.” The Organization of American Historian’s Magazine of History: A Quarterly Magazine for Teachers of History. Issue on Business History. Edited by Pamela W. Laird and Mark H. Rose. January 2010.

“‘I am Kay and I Prefer Modern’: Bridal Testimonials and the Rise of Consumer Rites, 1920-1950s.” In Testimonial Advertising in the American Marketplace: Emulation, Identity, Community, edited by Marlis Schweitzer and Marina Moskowitz. Palgrave Macmillan, 2009.

“The Rise and Fall of Rudge & Guenzel: From Independent Retailer to Department Store Chain, 1886-1941.” Nebraska History (Autumn 2008).

“’The Biggest Small-Town Store in America’: A Case Study of the Independent Retailer, 1900-1990s.” Enterprise and Society: The International Journal of Business History (September 2008).

“‘A Real Man’s Ring’: Gender and the Invention of Tradition.” Journal of Social History. (Summer 2003).

“Courtship Letters of an African American Couple: Race, Gender, Class, and the Cult of True Womanhood.” In A Question of Manhood: A Reader in U.S. Black Men’s History and Masculinity, vol. 2, edited by Earnestine Jenkins and Darlene Clark Hine. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2001.

“‘At the Curve Exchange’: Postwar Beauty Culture and Working Women at Maidenform.” In Beauty and Business: Commerce, Gender, and Culture in Modern America, edited by Philip Scranton. New York: Routledge Press, 2000.

Selected Courses

  • Introduction to Historical Methods
  • U.S. History Between the Wars, 1919-1941
  • Popular Culture and the Media: Historical Perspectives
  • American Consumer Society
  • Business History
  • U.S. Women’s History

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Contact Information
Department of History
Hartwick College
Golisano Hall
Oneonta, New York 13820
Phone:  607-431-4392
Fax:  607-431-4351