Prof. Brian MurphyBrian Murphy

Associate Professor

Early American republic; U.S. economic and political history; political economy



Brian Phillips Murphy studies the political economy of the early American republic, particularly the development of financial institutions, transportation infrastructure, and political parties. He is also interested in how the definition of political corruption changed during and after the American Revolution. Professor Murphy is a co-director of the Columbia Seminar in Early American History and Culture, and a member of the board of editors of the Papers of Gouverneur Morris.



Professor Murphy is the author of Building the Empire State: Political Economy in Early America, which was pubished by the University of Pennsylvania Press in 2015. A portion of the book appeared as an article in the April 2008 William and Mary Quarterly. Titled “‘A very convenient instrument’: The Manhattan Company, Aaron Burr, and the Election of 1800,” the article won the 2009 Richard L. Morton Award from the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture.

At Baruch College, Professor Murphy has been awarded a Whiting Fellowship for excellence in teaching and a Eugene M. Lang Junior Faculty Research Fellowship. He is also a member of the faculty of the Macaulay Honors College at CUNY.

In 2011, Professor Murphy was the guest curator of an exhibition on the history of banking in New York City at the Museum of the City of New York titled "Capital of Capital: New York's Banks and the Creation of a Global Economy." Subsequently he was interviewed for an episode of NPR's Planet Money about "The Birth of the Dollar Bill."

Professor Murphy is currently at work on a book about corruption in American history and co-editing a volume of essays re-examining the Critical Period. He is also leading a public hisory project with the Organization of American Historians and the National Park Service to help develop the Great Falls National Historic Park in Paterson, N.J.

Professor Murphy is a contributing editor at Talking Points Memo and has been an MSNBC Contributor.


1998, A.B., History, Haverford College

2002, M.A., History, University of Virginia

2008, Ph.D., History, University of Virginia

Professor Murphy's personal website can be found here.

Prof. Brian Murphy on Rachel Maddow


If you are a member of the media and would like to contact Prof. Murphy, call 646.360.0276.

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