Profile profile for McCullaT

Theresa McCulla


Ph.D., American Studies, Harvard University, 2017

M.A., History, Harvard University, 2012

Culinary Arts Diploma, Cambridge School of Culinary Arts, 2010

B.A., Romance Studies, Harvard College, 2004

Research Specialties: 

I am a historian of the 18th-, 19th-, and 20th-century United States. My research explores the histories and material culture of race, ethnicity, and gender, especially in conjunction with food and drink.

My first book, Consumable City: Food and Race in New Orleans (under contract with the University of Chicago Press), explores the physical spaces and cultural narratives of food in New Orleans. The project investigates the cultural power of food production, consumption, and their associated material culture in urban space.

Role in Museum: 

As curator of the American Brewing History Initiative, I am building an archive of American beer and brewing history, with a special focus on the stories of homebrewing and craft beer. I travel around the country to collect objects and documents and record oral histories with the many talented women and men who make the American brewing industry the most creative in the world. These materials live in the collections of the Division of Work and Industry and the Archives Center.

Awards, Honors, and Special Recognition: 

Semifinalist, Kroos Prize, best dissertation in business history, Business History Conference, 2017

Honorable Mention, Katz Award, best dissertation in urban history, Urban History Association, 2016

Finalist, Ralph H. Gabriel Prize, best dissertation in American Studies, American Studies Association, 2016


“Fava Beans and Báhn Mì: Ethnic Revival and the New New Orleans Gumbo.” Quaderni Storici 51 no. 1 (April 2016): 71-102. Special issue: Food, Migration, and Mobility in Historical Perspective: Nineteenth to Twenty-First Century.