Charlotte M. Gradie, Ph.D.

Charlotte M. Gradie, Ph.D.

Chair, History Dept/Professor , History

Charlotte Gradie is a historian of Latin America with interests in the early contact period. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Connecticut, Storrs. She teaches courses in colonial and modern Latin America, the history of medicine, and the Western Civilization survey.

She is the author of the book, The Tepehuan Revolt of 1616, University of Oklahoma Press, which presents the unexpected four-year uprising as an crucial moment testing both the Spanish institutions of conquest and Jesuit evangelism. It also demonstrated the ongoing level of resistance among the Tepehuan. She argues that although Spanish colonial policies had shifted after 1590 from war and conquest to institutional dominance of daily life through the missions, the revolt resulted in Jesuits reasserting their position as social leaders and a reintroduction of the presidio system of government in Sinaloa, Sonora, Baja California, and Arizona.

She is also author of many journal articles and reviews.

Degrees and Certifications

    • B.A. (cum laude) University of Connecticut, Storrs, History and English, 1973
    • M.A. University of Connecticut, Storrs, 1975
    • Ph.D. University of Connecticut, Storrs, 1990

Teaching Responsibilities

    • Latin American to 1826
    • Latin America from 1826
    • Contemporary Latin America
    • The U.S. and Latin America through History
    • Discovery and Conquest
    • Medicine, Disease and History
    • History of Western Civilization to 1500
    • History of Western Civilization since 1500

Research Interests and Grants

    • Contemporary Guatemala
    • Cultural contact in colonial Mexico; the Spanish in the north Atlantic

Awards and Fellowships

    • Andrew Mellon Fellowship
    • Connecticut Humanities Council
    • Sacred Heart University URCG, Presidential Seminar

Publications and Presentations

    View Publications

    The Tepehuan Revolt of 1616: Militarism, Evangelism and Colonialism in Seventeenth-Century Nueva Vizcaya, Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 2000.

     Six Articles on Spain and Portugal, The World and Its Peoples, Vol. 5, “Europe,” Oxford, BCS Publishing, 2012.

    “Trade and Communications in Sixteenth Century North America,”  American Centuries , MTM Publishing, New York, 2011.

    “Chichimecs,” Oxford Encyclopedia of Mesoamerican History, Oxford University Press, 2001, 187-189.

    “Jesuit Missionaries and Native Elites in Northern Mexico, 1591-1616,” Occasional Papers, Latin American Studies Consortium of New England, February, 1997.

    “Discovering the Chichimecas,” The Americas, 51:1 (July 1994), 67-88.

     “The Powhatans in the Context of the Spanish Empire,” in Helen C. Rountree, ed., Powhatan Foreign Relations, 1500-1722. Charlottesville, 1993, 154-172.

    “History and Oppression in El Salvador,” Sacred Heart University Review, vol. 12, nos. 1&2, Fall/Spring 1992, 8-10.

     “Educators or Missionaries?: The Jesuits’ Conflict over Native Missions in Sixteenth-Century New Spain,” The Proceedings of the Middle Atlantic Historical Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities, 6:1991, 43-51

     “Spanish Jesuits in Virginia: The Mission that Failed,” The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, 96:2, April 1988, 131-156.

    Conference Presentations

    “The Jesuits and Rituals of Martyrdom,” VIII Mediterranean Studies Conference, University of Granada, Granada, Spain, May 29-June 1, 2002.

    “The Medieval Wildman in New Spain: The Case of the ‘Other Las Casas’, XIXth Medieval Forum, Plymouth State College, Plymouth, NH, April 18-19, 1998.

    “Language as an Instrument of Empire Building: The Case of the Jesuits of New Spain,” IX Conference of Mexican and North American Historians, Mexico City, Oct. 28-30, 1994.

    “Through a Glass Darkly: Jesuit Perceptions of the Indians of New Spain, 1566-1590,” History of Christianity Conference, University of Notre Dame, March 26-28, 1992.

    “Educators or Missionaries? The Jesuits’ Conflict over Native Missions in Sixteenth-Century New Spain,” Middle Atlantic Historical Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities Annual Meeting, University of Scranton, March 23, 1991.

    “The ‘Savage Chichimecs’: Historical Reality or Spanish Creation?” The VIII Conference on Mexican and American Historians, San Diego, CA, October 18-21, 1990.

    “The Divided Nature of Spanish Policy toward the Powhatans in the Late Sixteenth Century,” The American Society for Ethnohistory Annual Meeting, Williamsburg, VA, Nov. 11-13, 1988.

    “An Early Contact Between the Spanish and Virginia Algonkians,” Nineteenth Algonquian Conference, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., October 23-25, 1987.

    Invited Presentations

    “‘Where Silver Opens the Way, the Gospel Follows’: Jesuit Missionaries, Native Peoples and the Conquest of New Spain’s Northern Frontier,” Fairfield University, March 5, 1998.

    “Jesuit Missionaries and Native Elites in Northern Mexico, 1591-1616,” Symposium in Honor of Hugh M. Hamill, Jr., University of Connecticut, Storrs, Nov. 4-5, 1994.

    “History of American Historical Societies,” Aspinock Historical Society of Putnam, Connecticut, 1993.

     “El Salvador: Visions of the Future,” University of Connecticut, Storrs, October 29, 1992.

    “The Voyages of Christopher Columbus: First Contact between Two Worlds,” Connecticut Council for International Competence Annual Meeting, Sacred Heart University, Nov. 15, 1991.

Contact Information

Office Location & Hours

  • Location: HC 212K

    Humanities Center of Acad Bldg HC*212K
    College of Arts and Sciences
  • View Campus Map