Hannah A. Farber

Hannah A. Farber

Research Interest

Office Hours

Tuesday & Thursday 11:30am-12:30pm


Ph.D. – University of California, Berkeley, 2014
M. A. – University of California, Berkeley, 2010
B.A. – Yale University, 2005

Interests and Research

Professor Hannah Farber specializes in the political economy of colonial North America, the early American republic, and the Atlantic World. Her first book, Underwriters of the United States (Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture/UNC Press, 2021) explains how the transnational system of marine insurance, by governing the behavior of American merchants, influenced the establishment and early development of the American republic.

Additional research interests include early modern globalization and the visual and material culture of ocean commerce. Early-stage projects include a cultural history of interest rates and a study of commercial property marks as phenomena with visual, material, and legal aspects.

Hannah Farber is a series editor for American Beginnings, 1500-1900, at the University of Chicago Press, and a frequent co-organizer of the Columbia University Seminar on Early American History and Culture.

She was a 2020-2021 recipient of a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow at the New-York Historical Society.


  • Contemporary Civilization I and II
  • Early American Autobiography as History: Testimony, Adventure, Confession (seminar)
  • Readings in Early American History (graduate)
  • The Early American Republic: How the Rebels Became the Empire (lecture)


  • 2020: National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow at the New-York Historical Society
  • 2019: Heyman Center Junior Faculty Fellowship, Columbia University
  • 2019: Hettleman Summer Fesearch Fellowship, Columbia University
  • 2018: Lenfest Junior Faculty Development Grant, Columbia University
  • 2015: Finalist, Dissertation Prize, Society for Historians of the Early American Republic
  • 2013-14: Mabelle McLeod Lewis Memorial Fund Fellowship (Stanford, CA)
  • 2012-2013: Barra Dissertation Fellowship, McNeil Center for Early American Studies
  • 2012-2013: Long Term Fellowship, Program in Early American Economy and Society, Library Company of Philadelphia
  • 2011-2012: Exploratory Travel Grant, Economic History Association
  • 2011-2012: Fellowship, New England Regional Fellowship Consortium
  • 2011-2012: Marty and Bruce Coffey Fellowship, Huntington Library
  • 2011-2012: Albert J. Beveridge Grant for Research in the History of the Western Hemisphere, American Historical Association
  • 2011-2012: George H. Guttridge Graduate Prize, History Department, UC-Berkeley
  • 2011-2012: Short-Term Academic Research Fellowship, American Antiquarian Society
  • 2011-2012: Sort-Term Fellowship, Program in Early American Economy and Society, Library Company of Philadelphia
  • 2011-2012: Samuel Flagg Bemis Dissertation Research Grant, Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations
  • 2010: Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor Award, UC-Berkeley
  • 2005: John Addison Porter prize for best undergraduate thesis in American history, Yale University


  • American Historical Association
  • Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture
  • Society for Historians of the Early American Republic


“State-Building After War’s End: A Government Financier Adjusts his Portfolio for Peace,” Taking Stock of the State in Nineteenth-Century America, Journal of the Early Republic, Vol. 38, No. 1 (Spring 2018): 67-76.

[In Progress:] Manuscript: Underwriters of the United States.

“Insurance,” Oxford Bibliographies in Atlantic History, ed. Trevor Burnard, Sept. 2016.

Review of Building the Empire State (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2015) by Brian Phillips Murphy. William and Mary Quarterly 73 (3) July 2016: 596-601.

“Millions for Credit: Peace with Algiers and the Establishment of America’s Commercial Reputation Overseas, 1795-96,” Journal of the Early Republic, Vol. 34, No. 2 (Summer 2014), 187-217.

“Nobody Panic: The Emerging Worlds of Economics and History in America,” book review of Jessica Lepler, The Many Panics of 1837: People, Politics, and the Creation of a Transatlantic Financial Crisis (Cambridge, 2013), and Jonathan Levy, Freaks of Fortune: The Emerging World of Capitalism and Risk in America (Harvard, 2012),Enterprise and Society, Fall 2015.

“Insurance in Philadelphia,” Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia, ed. Charlene Mires, Mid-Atlantic Regional Center for the Humanities, Rutgers University-Camden.http://philadelphiaencyclopedia.org/archive/insurance/.

“Geography, Sovereignty and Space: The 2012-2013 Year at the McNeil Center for Early American Studies.” Early American Studies, online, June, 2013.

“Enlightenment in the Margins,” review of Caroline Winterer, “The American Enlightenment: Treasures from the Stanford University Library,” Common-Place.org, Sept. 2011.

“The Rise and Fall of the Province of Lygonia, 1643–1658,” New England Quarterly 82 (Sept. 2009), 490–513.