Featured Project:


by the
Digital Scholarship Lab
in partnership with the
Distant Viewing Lab


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.


Maps created and designed by Justin Madron and Nathaniel Ayers for “Southern Journey: The Migrations of the American South, 1790-2010”, received the Best Cartography award, the ICA and IMIA Recognition of Excellence in Cartography award, and third place in the Spatial Analysis using ArcGIS StoryMaps category from the 2021 Esri User Conference Map Gallery.
Family Tree Magazine
The DSL's Atlas of the Historical Geography of the United States has been selected as one of the Family Tree Magazine's 101 Best Websites for Genealogy.
The DSL has just released a new version of Photogrammar where users can view 170,000 photographs taken by the FSA and OWI agencies of the U.S. Federal Government between 1935 and 1943.
Southern Journey
Edward L. Ayers releases Southern Journey: The Migrations of the American South, 1790-2020 with maps designed by the DSL's Justin Madron and Nathaniel Ayers.
The New York Times
The DSL's Mapping Inequality project and research is highlighted in The New York Times' article: "How Decades of Racist Housing Policy Left Neighborhoods Sweltering".

Latest Maps


Photogrammar provides a web-based visualization platform for exploring the 170,000 photographs taken by the FSA and OWI agencies of the U.S. Federal Government between 1935 and 1943.

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Not Even Past: Social Vulnerability and the Legacy of Redlining

Not Even Past maps redlining maps from the 1930s with maps of health dispartities today, showing enduring contours of marked inequality in American cities over the past century.

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Mapping Inequality: Redlining in New Deal America

Mapping Inequality updates the study of New Deal America, the federal government, housing, and inequality for the twenty-first century. It offers unprecedented online access to the national collection of "security maps" and area descriptions produced between 1935 and 1940 by one of the New Deal's most important agencies, the Home Owners' Loan Corporation or HOLC.

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Digital Humanities Projects at UR


Bunk is a shared home for the web’s most interesting writing and thinking about the American past. Join us to explore the multi-dimensional connections between past and present.

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Photogrammar is a web-based platform for organizing, searching, and visualizing the 170,000 photographs from 1935 to 1945 created by the United States Farm Security Administration and Office of War Information (FSA-OWI).

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Virginia Secession Convention

The project explores a topic of broad scholarly and public interest as the sesquicentennial of the Civil War approaches: How did the decision to secede--and start the bloodiest conflict in US history--come about?

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Race and Racism

The Race and Racism at the University of Richmond Project is an interdisciplinary initiative that documents, interrogates, and catalyzes community discussions on the history of race and racism at the university.

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The Digital Scholarship Lab is:

Robert K. Nelson
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.
Nathaniel Ayers
Visualization and Web Designer
Nathaniel Ayers is the Digital Scholarship Lab’s visualization and web designer, serving as the head of the Lab’s design 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
GIS Project Manager and Analyst
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.
Lauren Tilton
Research Fellow
Lauren Tilton is Assistant Professor of Digital Humanities and Research Fellow at University of Richmond’s Digital Scholarship Lab. Her current book project focuses on participatory media in the 1960s and 1970s. She is the Co-PI of the project Participatory Media, which interactively engages with and presents participatory community media from the 1960s and 1970s. She is also a director of Photogrammar, a web-based platform for organizing, searching and visualizing the 170,000 photographs from 1935 to 1945 created by the United States Farm Security Administration and Office of War Information (FSA-OWI). She is the co-author of Humanities Data in R (Springer, 2015).
Edward L Ayers
Senior Research Fellow
Edward L. Ayers is Senior Research Fellow at the DSL. He is president emeritus 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, The Promise of the New South: Life After Reconstruction, and The Thin Light of Freedom, and is co-editor of the Valley of the Shadow digital archive. He is the co-primary investigator on “Visualizing Emancipation.”

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