• University of Richmond
  • About the DSL

    The Digital Scholarship Lab develops innovative digital humanities projects that contribute to research and teaching at and beyond the University of Richmond. It seeks to reach a wide audience by developing projects that integrate thoughtful interpretation in the humanities and social sciences with innovations in new media.



    Robert K. Nelson is the DSL’s director. He is an historian of nineteenth-century America. He holds a PhD in American studies from the College of William and Mary, and his work has appeared in the Journal of Social History and American Literature.

    Scott Nesbit is the Digital Scholarship Lab’s associate director. He completed a PhD in History at the University of Virginia in 2013 and writes about space, place, and the end of slavery in the American Civil War. His essays and articles have appeared in a number of venues, including the Journal of the Civil War Era and Southern Spaces.

    Nathaniel Ayers is the Digital Scholarship Lab’s programmer analyst, serving as the head of the Lab’s technical work and providing technical assistance to faculty and students. A graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University, School of the Arts, Nathaniel has done programming and visualization work for the University of Virginia.

    Justin Madron is the Digital Scholarship Lab’s GIS Analyst. He is involved in GIS related tasks and technologies required for the production and maintenance of the digital atlas of American history project. He has a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Landscape Architecture from West Virginia University and a Master’s degree from Virginia Commonwealth University in Environmental Studies with a focus on Geographical Information Systems and Technologies. His thesis research was on the historical and present reforestation of red spruce in the Appalachian Mountains.

    Claire Clement is the Digital Scholarship Lab’s former Historical GIS Analyst. She is a PhD candidate in Medieval History at the University of Cambridge and has master’s degrees in medieval history and urban planning. Her dissertation research is on the economy, organization and gender relations in Syon Abbey, a late-medieval English double-monastery (housing both nuns and priests). Her additional research projects use GIS to investigate women’s travel and daily mobility in medieval England. At the DSL, she serves as the GIS specialist for a number of spatial history projects.

    Edward L. Ayers is Senior Research Fellow at the DSL. He is the president and a professor of history at the University of Richmond. A scholar of the American South, he is the author of numerous books, including In the Presence of Mine Enemies: The Civil War in the Heart of America, 1859-1863 and The Promise of the New South: Life After Reconstruction, and is co-editor of the Valley of the Shadow digital archive. He is the co-primary investigator on “Visualizing Emancipation.”


    • Digital Scholarship Lab
    • Boatwright Memorial Library
    • 28 Westhampton Way
    • University of Richmond, VA 23173
    • Phone: (804) 484-1555
    • Fax: (804) 484-1638