Events and Press

Please contact me if you would like me to speak to your group about my new book.


East Central Illinois Master Naturalist Presentation, “The Tallgrass Prairies in Early America,” May 20.

Central Illinois Master Naturalist Presentation, “The Tallgrass Prairie in Early America,” April 10, 6pm. Venue TBA.


University of Wisconsin Arboretum Winter Enrichment Series, “The Tallgrass Prairie in Early America.” February 8, 2024, online.

Webinar on Reclaiming Stories, October 24, 7pm, Via Zoom. Sponsored by U of I Alumni Affairs. Register.

Lecture/ Webinar for  Sinsinawa Mound Retreat Center, Tuesday November 7, 7pm Central, via Zoom.

Environmental Studies of the Great Lakes Conference (postponed)

Stories, Interviews, and News Releases:

Bob talks about People of the Ecotone with Stephen Hausmann on the New Books Network.

Reviews of People of the Ecotone

People of the Ecotone won the Hal K. Rothman Prize in Environmental History from the Western History Association.

“Writing sensitively about place while also teaching at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Morrissey models deep research and public engagement of the kind that pushes a wide readership to understand complex Indigenous environmental histories…Working from an assumption that most readers can imagine the monocultures of corn and soy that have dominated the region under industrial agriculture, People of the Ecotone recenters the midcontinental environmental imagination in powerful ways, suggesting that U.S. histories of the Midwest have foreshortened people’s sense of the past and therefore limited the collective imagination of possible futures.” Thomas M. Wickman, William and Mary Quarterly

“Morrissey attempts, and succeeds, at drawing a historical map of human-nonhuman interactions that reflects the complexity of Native American cultures.” Zhihui Zou in World History Encyclopedia

People of the Ecotone is a compelling book. In a little over two hundred pages, Robert Michael Morrissey argues—and clearly demonstrates—that the histories of Native people during the contact era were not simply reactions to outside forces but emerged from older, place-and-time-specific relationships between humans and the natural world.” Cameron B. Strang in H-Net Reviews.

“Robert Michael Morrissey’s People of the Ecotone is a captivating analysis of the ways in which the peculiar environmental characteristics of the Illinois River Valley and the larger prairie peninsula redefined Native American societies after the fall of Cahokia.” Stephen Warren in Western Historical Quarterly.