Honors Program

Ashley Towle Ph.D.

Lecturer of History

Office Location

100 Payson Smith



Academic Degrees

  • Ph.D. History, University of Maryland, 2017
  • M.A. History, University of Maryland, 2015
  • B.A. History, Gettysburg College, 2009


Ashley Towle is a Lecturer in the History Department at the University of Southern Maine. Her research and teaching interests include 19th Century United States history, the history of the American South, the history of race in the United States, and the history of gender and sexuality. Currently, she is working on a book manuscript that explores how newly freed slaves made sense of their freedom in light of the culture of death that was wrought by the Civil War and the violent years of Reconstruction. Through an investigation into how African Americans experienced and coped with the passing away of loved ones and community members from disease, starvation, and murder at the hands of recalcitrant white Southerners, she argues that newly liberated slaves found significant ways to give credence to their free status through their encounters with mortality.

At the University of Southern Maine, Dr. Towle teaches courses on United States history, the history of slavery, the history of death and dying, and women’s history. In the Honors Program, she teaches HON 101: Power, Pleasure, and Private Matters: The History of Sexuality in the United States; HON 215: Thinking in Honors; and HON 415: Honors Capstone.