Professor David Ormrod, Principal Investigator
David came to the University of Kent via LSE and Christ’s College, Cambridge, where he was a college Research Scholar. Apart from establishing a continuing interest in Dutch history and culture, his doctoral research with Charles Wilson affirmed his conviction of the centrality of the social sciences to historical research.
David’s teaching and research interests lie in the field of early modern English and European economic and cultural history. His most recent book, The Rise of Commercial Empires, entered the American Library Association’s list of outstanding academic books of 2003. He has written widely on early modern commercial history and co-convenes the fortnightly research seminar on The Premodern World at the Institute of Historical Research in London. The collected essays which he edited with Michael North on Art Markets in Europe, 1400-1800, anticipate several of the themes covered in his history of The Origins of the English Art Market, 1650-1815, in progress.
In addition to these areas, David’s teaching interests include Museum, Gallery and Heritage studies, involving two new courses on Museums and the National Heritage, and Art for the Nation, 1550-1914. He has acted as guest curator at the Museum of London, and played a leading role in promoting collaborative ventures involving curators and historians while consultant to the Achievement Project (Renaissance Trust) and Visiting Fellow at the Institute of Historical Research. More recently, this has involved co-organising sessions for the World Economic History Congress devoted to economic history and the arts, in Madrid, Buenos Aires and Helsinki. His contribution to the last Congress in Utrecht opened the session on the early modern shift in the world economy from the North Sea-Baltic region to the Atlantic; please see (session J8) here for more information.
Dr James M. Gibson, Senior Researcher
James M. Gibson received the B.A. in 1970 from Houghton College and the M.A. in 1974 and Ph.D. in 1976 from the University of Pennsylvania. He lectured in English literature and writing at Houghton College, before coming to Kent on sabbatical leave in 1984 to begin editing the Kent volumes for the international research project Records of Early English Drama.
Having decided to settle permanantly in Kent, he began working as part-time archivist in 1987 for The Rochester Bridge Trust, where he has catalogued the bridge archive, helped write and edit the bridge history, Traffic and Politics, and designed the bridge website.
He has also catalogued the records and written the histories of The New College of Cobham and the Walthamstow Almshouse and General Charities. Currently, in addition to his work for the Rochester Bridge Trust, he serves as part-time archivist for the Richard Watts and City of Rochester Almshouse Charities and as Senior Research Fellow in the School of History at the University of Kent.
Dr James Baker, Assistant Project Manager
James Baker completed a PhD in Cartoons and Caricature at the University of Kent, Canterbury, in September 2010 the title of which was 'Isaac Cruikshank and the notion of British Liberty, 1783-1811'.
James is a collaborator with the British Cartoon Archive, writes for The Comics Grid, and is lead investigator of 'Cradled in Caricature'. His research interests include Georgian visual satire, the Covent Garden old price riots, the construction and communication of humour, and the digitial humanities.
James is Assistant Project Manager for Phase II of the City and Region Project, with oversight for the design, build, and delivery of the City and Region website.