John W. Hall

Position title: Ambrose-Hesseltine Professor of U.S. Military History


Phone: 608.263.2364

Office: 5133 Mosse Humanities
Mailbox: 5014 Mosse Humanities
Curriculum Vitae (pdf)
Office Hours: TBA

John Hall headshot


I am a military historian broadly interested in the ways in which societies have organized violence to pursue and defend their interests. I am especially interested in the ethnohistorical study of military conflict and cooperation between the Native peoples of North America and European colonial powers. More generally, I am interested in Native American and early American history with particular emphasis on the Revolutionary Era and the Early Republic. Within the field of military history, my research has focused on “small wars” involving irregular forces and U.S. defense policy. I am currently working on a military history of Indian Removal in the southeastern United States.

A past president of the Society for Military History, I am also a retired U.S. Army Reserve colonel with past assignments as a historian to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, U.S. European Command, U.S. Central Command, and the Joint Chiefs of Staff.


Ph.D., University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
M.A., University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
B.S., U.S. Military Academy


Selected Publications:

  • “To Starve an Army: How Great Power Armies Respond to Austerity.” In Sustainable Security: Rethinking American National Security Strategy, edited by Jeremi Suri and Benjamin A. Valentino, 166-195. New York: Oxford University Press, 2016.
  • “An Irregular Reconsideration of George Washington and the American Military Tradition,” Journal of Military History 78, no. 3 (July 2014): 961-993.
  • “‘My Favorite Officer’: George Washington’s Apprentice, Nathanael Greene,” in Sons of the Father: George Washington and His Protégés, ed. Robert McDonald, 149-168 (Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2013).
  • ‘A Reckless Waste of Blood and Treasure’: The Last Campaign of the Second Seminole War,” in Between War and Peace: How America Ends Its Wars, ed. Matthew Moten (New York: Free Press, 2011).

Advisor To

Selected Awards

  • 2015 – Philip R. Certain & Gary D. Sandefur Distinguished Faculty Award, College of Letters and Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • 2015 – Army Historical Foundation Distinguished Writing Award for “An Irregular Reconsideration of George Washington and the American Military Tradition”
  • 2014 – William H. Kiekhofer Distinguished Teaching Award, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • 2012 – Dorothy and Hsin-Nung Yao Teaching Award, Department of History, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • 2011 – Vilas Associate, 2011-2012, University of Wisconsin-Madison

History Courses