Mark Alan Mattes

Assistant Professor & Internship Program Director


My first book, Handwriting in Early America: A Media History (UMass 2023), is an edited collection of essays that explores how handwriting has been and remains crucial to our understandings of communication, art, cultural difference, and social order. My current book project, Archival Apocrypha: The Figure of Logan in Colonial and Native American History, examines how Indigenous and colonial archives shape histories about Native Americans and the Ohio River Valley. An article based on this research, "Trees and Texts: Indigenous History, Material Media, and the Logan Elm" (Criticism), won the 2024 BIPOC Scholars Award from the Nineteenth-Century Studies Association. Recent writing also appears in American Literary History, Ohio Valley History, and Teaching the History of the Book (UMass 2023).

I regularly teach courses on Text Technologies, Book and Media History, Native American and African American Studies, and Early American Literature. In addition to teaching, I organized a NEH-funded undergraduate workshop, "Print Culture in the Age of Shakespeare," in support of Kentucky’s First Folio! exhibition in 2016. In 2019, I chaired "The Futures of Handwriting," an international symposium sponsored by UofL and the Rare Book School’s Mellon Society of Fellows in Critical Bibliography, in partnership with The Filson Historical Society. In 2023, I began the American Afterlives panel stream at the Louisville Conference on Literature and Culture. I also founded Hot Brown Press, which supports cool stuff at UofL and around town.

I think this is pretty rad.