Hayden Smith

Visiting Assistant Professor

Address: Maybank Hall 308
Office Hours: MWF 11:00-11:50 in person or via Zoom, & by appointment.
Phone: 843.953.1420
E-mail: Smithhr1@cofc.edu

Hayden Smith comes to the College from the University of Georgia where he earned his Ph.D. in History in 2012. Professor Smith’s research examines the intersection of environment, technology, and culture, with a particular focus in the South Carolina Lowcountry and broader American South. He is the author of Carolina’s Golden Fields: Inland Rice Cultivation in the South Carolina Lowcountry, 1670-1860 (Cambridge, 2020). Dr. Smith is also a contributor to the Lowcountry Digital History Initiative (LDHI) and author of Forgotten Fields: Inland Rice Plantations in the South Carolina Lowcountry.

Smith is also a lead author of Emergence and Evolution of Carolina’s Colonial Cattle Economy, the result of a three-year National Science Foundation (NSF) grant. This interdisciplinary study explores the origins and transformation of Carolina’s colonial animal economy related to urban Charleston and the surrounding rural production centers. The publication highlights the influence of cattle, fires, timbering, rice cultivation, demographic changes, and commodity trade on South Carolina’s cultural and physical landscapes between 1670 and the 1820s. The objective is to understand how Charleston’s animal economy changes in relation with broader cultural, environmental, and technological transformations.


Ph.D. University of Georgia, 2012

M.A. College of Charleston, 2002

B.A. Furman University, 1995

Research Interests

Environmental, Colonial and Antebellum U.S., Atlantic World, Technology and Culture.

Courses Taught

HIST 115: Trade and Culture along the Silk Roads

HIST 116: Environment and Imperialism

HIST 201: United States to 1865

HIST 202: United States since 1865

HIST 224: History of the South to 1865

HIST 304: Civil War and Reconstruction

SOST 200: Introduction to Southern Studies


Selected Publications

Carolina’s Golden Fields: Inland Rice Cultivation in the South Carolina Lowcountry, 1670-1860 (Cambridge University Press, 2020)

“Knowledge of the Hunt: African-American Guides on Former South Carolina Lowcountry Rice Plantations,” in Leisure, Plantations, and the Making of a New South: The Sporting Plantations of the South Carolina Lowcountry and Red Hills Region, 1900-1940, eds. Julia Brock and Daniel Vivian (Lexington Books, 2015)

“Reserving Water: Environmental and Technological Relationships with Colonial South Carolina Rice Plantations,” in Rice: Global Networks and New Histories, eds. Francesca Bray, Peter Coclanis, Edda Fields- Black, Dagmar Schafer (Cambridge University Press, 2015) 

In Land of Cypress and Pine: An Environmental History of the Santee Experimental Forest, 1683-1937 (U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service, 2012)