John F. Beeler
- (205) 348-1872
- 241B ten Hoor Hall
- PhD, Illinois, 1991
- Military and Naval History
- European History
- The Social and Cultural History of Victorian Britain
- Public Opinion and Defense Policy
- Imperial Defense Administration
- Libertarian Fallacies
- Alexander, Effie, and their Worlds: Life, Love, and Work in a Victorian Scots Gentry Family
- A social and cultural history of the Victorian Scots gentry as viewed through the lens of Alexander and Euphemia (“Effie”) Milne, with especial emphasis on family life, the demands of professionalization, and the place of the Scots gentry within the larger “British world.”
- The Milne Papers, Volume 4: 1865-1896, for the Navy Records Society/Ashgate Press.
- Covers Alexander Milne’s service and activities as First Naval Lord of the Admiralty (1866-68, 1872-76), Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Navy’s Mediterranean Squadron (1869-70), a member of the Admiralty’s “Alabama Claims” Committee (1870-71), Chair of the Colonial Office’s Colonial Defence Committee (1878-79), and as a member of the Carnarvon Commission on Imperial Defence (1879-82)
- British Naval Policy in the Gladstone-Salisbury Era, 1880-1902
- This project investigates the transformation of British naval policy during the crucial period 1880-1900, focusing in particular on the intersection between public perceptions and defense policy. It aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of the forces that impelled policy shifts and to illuminate the response of statesmen and administrators to mounting domestic pressure. This study will shed light on the extent to which national security policy is driven by domestic factors—most notably public opinion, pressure from the press, and partisan politics—in a modern, mass electorate, constitutional state.
- Western Civilization since 1648 (HY 102)
- The British Empire and Commonwealth (HY 393)
- England/Britain in the “Long Eighteenth Century,” 1688-1832 (HY 493/593)
- Britain 1815-1914 (HY 494/594)
- Britain 1890-Present (HY 400/500)
- British Popular Culture and Music, 1950-2000 (HY 300)
- Britain and the World Wars (HY 400)
- History of the U.S. Navy (HY 295)
- Naval History Proseminar (Graduate Colloquium) (HY 639)
Awards and Honors
- Chosen by students to deliver The University of Alabama Graduate School’s “Last Lecture” (2015)
- Selected as one of the top 300 professors in the United States by the Princeton Review, as detailed in The Best 300 Professors (New York: Random House/Princeton Review) (2012)
- Omicron Delta Kappa, National Leadership Honor Society (2009)
- Elected Fellow of the Royal Historical Society (2005)
- The University of Alabama College of Arts and Sciences Distinguished Teaching Fellow (2001-2)
- The University of Alabama Alumni Association’s Outstanding Commitment to Teaching Award (1999)
- Winner of the American Historical Association’s 1998 Paul W. Birdsall Prize for best work on European strategic and military history for British Naval Policy in the Gladstone-Disraeli Era, 1866-1880 (1998)
- Postdoctoral Fellow, Yale University (1991-92)
- MacArthur Scholar (1988-89)
- “Maintaining Naval Hegemony in the Industrial Age, Britain 1850-1889” in The Sea in History: The Modern World, edited by Christian Buchet and N.A.M. Rodger (Martlesham, Suffolk: Boydell and Brewer, 2017).
- For Project Océanides, a multi-volume, multi-author project exploring the role of the sea in the fates of nations.
- “Lord Northbrook’s 1885 Response to William T. Stead’s Criticisms of Naval Preparedness in the Pall Mall Gazette” in The Naval Miscellany, Volume 8, edited by Brian Vale (Abingdon, Oxon: Navy Records Society/Routledge, 2017).
- Explains and presents an important contemporary source addressing criticisms of the British Royal Navy.
- Ideas, Culture and Strategy: The Transformation of British and American Naval Policy in the Pre-Dreadnought Era, authored by Robert E. Mullins, edited by John Beeler (London: Palgrave/Macmillan, 2016).
- A new perspective on the transformation of British and American naval policy in the late 1880s.
- The Milne Papers: the Papers of Admiral of the Fleet Sir Alexander Milne, Bt., K.C.B. 1806-1896, Volume II, The Royal Navy and the Outbreak of the American Civil War, 1860-1862 (Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate Publishing for the Navy Records Society, 2015)
- Surveys the peacetime operations of the Royal Navy during the Pax Britannica, with particular emphasis on the British response to the first year of the American Civil War.
- The Milne Papers: the Papers of Admiral of the Fleet Sir Alexander Milne, Bt., K.C.B. 1806-1896, Volume I, 1820-1859 (Aldershot, Hampshire: Ashgate Publishing for the Navy Records Society, 2004).
- Covers the sea-service and early Admiralty service of Admiral of the Fleet Sir Alexander Milne (1806-96), the most important naval administrator of the Victorian Royal Navy.
- Birth of the Battleship: British Capital Ship Design 1870-1881 (London: Chatham Publishing, 2001).
- Challenges many long-held beliefs about the British navy’s receptivity to technological change during the ironclad era.
- Imperial Defence, 1868-1887, authored by Donald M. Schurman, edited by John Beeler (Portland, OR: Frank Cass Co., 2000).
- Professor Schurman’s long-unpublished Cambridge University thesis remains the definitive study of the evolution of a comprehensive scheme for defense of the empire on which “the sun never set.”
- British Naval Policy in the Gladstone-Disraeli Era, 1866-1880 (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1997).
- The first in-depth examination of the subject. Revises conventional wisdom about the effectiveness of British naval administration during the mid-Victorian era.
- The Milne Papers, Volume 3: 1862-1864, for the Navy Records Society/Ashgate Press.
- Surveys the Royal Navy’s activities in North American waters during the American Civil War, and the intersection between British diplomacy and naval policy toward the United States and the Confederacy.