Ruma Chopra

Ruma ChopraPh.D.

University of California, Davis

B.S. and M.A.

Carnegie Mellon University


DMH 217






Areas of Interest

British Atlantic settlement in the “old thirteen,” Caribbean, Canadian Maritimes, and West Africa; Indigenous and African slaveries, and indentured labor; Voluntary and involuntary migrations; Atlantic revolutions; Loyalists and Maroons; Environment and Empire.


Almost Home: Maroons between Slavery and Freedom in Jamaica, Nova Scotia, and Sierra Leone (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2018).

Almost Home is featured in an interview in New Books in British Studies, a New Books Network podcast.

Choosing Sides: Loyalists in Revolutionary America (Rowman and Littlefield Press, 2013).

Unnatural Rebellion: Loyalists in New York City during the Revolution (University of Virginia Press, 2011).


Munich Centre for Global History and the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society, 2019
Max Planck Institute (Göttingen), 2018
Social Science Research Council, 2017
Gilder Lehrman Institute, New York City, 2016
American Philosophical Society, 2015 and 2018
The Huntington Library, 2014 and 2018
John Carter Brown Library, Brown University, 2013
Clements Library, University of Michigan, 2012

Articles and Book Chapters

“Free Blacks Who Left Nova Scotia for Sierra Leone, 1792–1800” in Karly Kehoe and Michael Vance (eds), Reappraisals of British Colonization in Atlantic Canada (University of Edinburgh Press, 2019)

“The Royalist Maroons of Jamaica in the British Atlantic World, 1740–1800,” in Varia História (Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, 2019)

“Post-War Loyalist Hopes: ‘To Be Parts and Not Dependencies of the Empire,’” in R. Brannon and J.S. Moore (eds) Loyalty and Revolution: Essays in Honor of Robert M. Calhoon (University of South Carolina Press, 2019).

“‘Wayward Humours’ and ‘Perverse Disputings’: Exiled Blacks and the Foundation of Sierra Leone, 1787–1800,” in B.N. Lawrance and N.R. Carpenter (eds) Africans in Exile: Mobility, Law, and Identity, Past and Present, (Indiana University Press, 2018).

“Maroons and Mi’kmaq in Nova Scotia: 1796–1800,” in Acadiensis: Journal of the History of the Atlantic Region XLVI, no. 1 (Winter/Spring 2017): 5–23.

“Loyalist Women during the Revolutionary Era,” in T.A. Foster (ed) Women in Early America (New York University Press, 2015).

“Charles Inglis,” in M.G. Spencer (ed) The Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of the American Enlightenment (Bloomsbury, 2015).

“Religion and the Loyalists,” in D.L. Dreisbach and M.D. Hall (eds) Faith and the Founders of the American Republic (Oxford, 2014). (Co-written with R.M. Calhoon)

“Enduring patterns of Loyalist Study: Definitions and Contours,” History Compass, 11, no. 11 (2013): 983–993.

“Loyalists,” in L. Dumenil (ed) Encyclopedia of American Social History (Oxford Press, 2013).

“Printer Hugh Gaine Crosses and Re-Crosses the Hudson,” New York History, 90 (Fall, 2009): 271–285.

Books Reviewed

S. Turner, Contested Bodies: Pregnancy, Childrearing, and Slavery in Jamaica, in The Historian (forthcoming, 2018)

H.A. Whitfield, North of Bondage: Loyalist Slavery in the Maritimes, in CHOICE (June, 2016)

J. Polasky, Revolution without Borders: The Call to Liberty in the Atlantic World, in American Historical Review (June, 2016)

J. Jemmott, Ties that Bind: The Black Family in Post-Slavery Jamaica, 1834–1882, in CHOICE (October, 2015)

P. Papas, Renegade Revolutionary: The Life of General Charles Lee, in American Historical Review, 120, no. 1 (2015): 236.

P. Gould, Writing the Rebellion: Loyalists and the Literature of Politics in British America, in Journal of American History, 101, no. 2 (2014).

J. Bannister and L Riordan, The Loyal Atlantic: Remaking the British Atlantic in the Revolutionary Era, in The Journal of Early Modern History, 17, no. 3 (2013): 309–311.

W. Roberts, A Place in History: Albany in the Age of Revolution, 1775–1825, in Journal of Early American History, 32, no. 3 (Fall, 2012): 561–563.

Invited Talks, 2010–2018


Obama Institute for Transnational American Studies, Mainz, Germany, “Environment and Identity in the Early Modern World”

Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity, Göttingen, Germany, “Enlightenment, Empire, and Environment”

Royal Society of Canada, “Thinking Historically about Refugees: Loyalists and Maroons in the Eighteenth Century.”

David Library of the American Revolution, “Maroons in the Age of Slavery” (Recorded, see

University of Pennsylvania, “The Jamaican Maroons and the Meanings of Migration”

Yale University Conference, New Haven, Connecticut, “Popular Royalism in Jamaica”

University of Edinburgh Conference, Edinburgh, UK, “Not Slaves: East Indians in Jamaica”

2015 and Earlier

Conable Conference in International Studies, Rochester Institute of Technology, New York, “Black Exiles in Nova Scotia and Sierra Leone”

George Washington Teacher Institute, Mount Vernon, Virginia, “Loyalist Perspective on the American Revolution”

Society of the American Revolution, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, “Post-Revolutionary Legacies”

John Carter Brown Library, Providence, Rhode Island, “Enemies of the British Atlantic, 1750–1800”

Fraunces Tavern Museum, New York City, New York, “Through Loyalist Eyes: The American Revolution as an Unnatural Rebellion” (Recorded by C-SPAN, see

Richmond Roundtable on the American Revolution, Richmond, Virginia, “Rethinking Loyalism in British America, 1750–1800”

David Library of the American Revolution, Washington Crossing, Pennsylvania, “Choosing Sides: Allegiances during the Revolutionary Era”

Clements Library, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, “Deporting ‘Dangerous Enemies,’ 1750–1800”

College of William & Mary, Omohundro Institute of Early American History, Williamsburg, Virginia, “Post-War Loyalist Hopes in the Canadian Maritimes”

The George Washington Forum on American Ideas, Politics & Institutions, Athens, Ohio, “The Loyalist Problem of Suppressing the ‘Unnatural Rebellion’ ”