Thomas Carty | Springfield College

Thomas Carty

Thomas Carty

Professor of History / Pre-law Advisor
Thomas Carty
  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Connecticut, Storrs, Conn., 1999
  • Master of Arts, University of Connecticut, Storrs, Conn., 1993
  • Bachelor of Arts, College of the Holy Cross, Worcester, Mass., 1991

Thomas Carty enjoys reading and writing about the intersection of culture, religion, and politics. His research about U.S. politics and international relations has given him the opportunity to travel throughout the United States as well as Paris, Bern, Geneva, and Zurich. At these locations, he conducted oral history interviews with government and business leaders. He also has researched in many manuscript collections at the presidential libraries of Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower, John Kennedy, and Ronald Reagan. In the process, he has come to a greater understanding of the importance of civility and collaboration among individuals within organizations. 

Courses Taught
  • White House Leadership
  • First Ladies and Presidential Elections
  • American Environmental History
  • World History
  • Harry Potter and History
Certifications and Memberships
  • Campuses for Environmental Stewardship (CES), Maine Campus Compact, 2015-2016. One of four faculty members at Springfield College to receive a grant of $4000 to embed service-learning projects within our environmentally-themed classes.
  • Summer Seminar: Slave Narratives, Yale University, June 2015. Selected as one of 27 (from a pool of 83 highly competitive nominees) by the Council of Independent Colleges and Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History.
  • Local Arrangements Coordinator, New England Historical Association’s (NEHA) spring conference (at Springfield College) in April 2014
  • Site Evaluator, New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC), visit to Gordon College, Wenham, MA, April 2012
  • Book Review Editor, New England Historical Association newsletter, 2006-present
  • Chairperson, New England Historical Association book award prize committee, 2009
  • Visiting Scholar, invited by the Organization of American Historians and the National Park Service to serve on a team of scholars to review John F. Kennedy’s birthplace and childhood home, Brookline, MA, Summer 2006

Selected Works


  • “JFK’s New Frontier and the Catholic Church: An Uneasy Partnership,” New England Historical Association, Spring Meeting 2018
  • “The Two Johns: John Kennedy and Pope John XXIII,” American Society for Church History, Winter Meeting January 2018
  • “John Kennedy, Catholicism and the 1960 Campaign in Connecticut” Keynote address to Association for the Study of Connecticut History, Fall Conference 2017
  • “Popes and Presidents: Sacred and Secular Diplomacy during the early Cold War,” New England Historical Association, Fall Meeting 2017
  • “Teaching the U.S. History Survey in the 21st Century” Roundtable discussion at New England Historical Association (NEHA) Spring Meeting 2017
  • “Religious and Secular Missions in Kennedy’s Peace Corps,” at the American Society for Church History (affiliated with the American Historical Association Annual Meeting), January 2016
  • “The Idea of Philanthropy in Kennedy’s Peace Corps,” Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA) November 2105
  • “Crossing Hearts: Switzerland’s Humanitarianism at the Dawn of the American Century,” Legacy of World War I Conference, Chestnut Hill College, Philadelphia, Nov 14-15, 2014
  • "The Apartment and Mad Men: Two Views of Corporate Culture in 1960," New England Popular Culture Association Fall Conference, Providence College, October, 2014
  • “Protestant-Catholic Conflict in the United States: The Cases of John F. Kennedy and Ronald W. Reagan,” Open University, Milton Keynes, United Kingdom, May 2011
  • “Religion and Ronald Reagan’s Foreign Policy,” Journal of Policy History Biannual Conference, Columbus, OH, June 2010 Comment, “The Presidential Election of 1960,” Journal of Policy History Biannual Conference, St. Louis, MO, June 2008
  • “U.S. Catholics in the 1968 Presidential Campaign,” Legacy of 1968: An Interdisciplinary Conference, Chestnut Hill College, Philadelphia, PA, May 2008
  • “A Catholic President at the Vatican? John F. Kennedy’s Visit to the Holy See in 1963,” Journal of Policy History Biannual Conference, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, June 2006
  • “The Moral Equivalent of War? U.S. Imperialism and the Peace Corps,” War and Empire Conference, Hauenstein Center for Presidential Studies, Grand Valley State College, Grand Rapids, MI, October 2005


Popular Media


  • Backwards, in High Heels: Faith Whittlesey, Reagan's Madam Ambassador in Switzerland and the West Wing. (Philadelphia: Casemate, 2012) 
  • A Catholic in the White House? Religion, Politics, and John Kennedy’s Presidential Campaign. (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2004, paperback 2008) How John F. Kennedy did what Al Smith could not

Chapters in Edited Books 

  • “Protestant-Catholic Conflict in the United States: The Cases of John F. Kennedy and Ronald W. Reagan,” in Protestant-Catholic Conflict from the Reformation to the 21st Century ed. John Wolffe, (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013) 
  • “Religion and the Presidency of John F. Kennedy,” in Religion and the Presidents, ed. Gaston Espinosa (New York: Columbia University Press, 2009) 
  • “White House Outreach to Catholics,” in Catholics and American Politics: The Dynamic Tension Between Faith and Power ed. Kristin Heyer, Mark Rozell, and Michael Genovese (Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press, 2008)