Penn State Harrisburg

Anne A. Verplanck, Ph.D.

ยท Associate Professor of American Studies and Heritage Studies; Humanities


Dr. Anne Verplanck teaches courses in American art and visual culture, social and cultural history, American decorative arts, museum studies, and heritage studies. Prior to joining the Penn State Harrisburg faculty in 2010, she worked in the museum field for 30 years. Until 2009, she was the Curator of Prints and Paintings at Winterthur Museum, where she also served as Interim Director of Museum Collections and Interim Director of the Research Fellowship Program. In addition, she taught in the Winterthur Program in American Material Culture/University of Delaware, and George Washington and George Mason universities. She has served in curatorial and consultant positions to numerous museums and historic sites and has lectured widely. Verplanck serves on the Board of the journal Winterthur Portfolio and on the Collections Committee of the Biggs Museum of American Art. A graduate of Connecticut College, Anne earned her M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in American Studies at the College of William and Mary.

Professional Affiliations

  • American Studies Association
  • College Art Association
  • American Association of Museums
  • Association of Art Museum Curators
  • Association of Historians of American Art
  • American Society of Eighteenth-Century Studies
  • Omohundro Institute for Early American History and Culture
  • McNeil Center for Early American Studies
  • Pennsylvania Historical Association

Research Interests

  • 18th- and 19th- century American Art and History
  • American Portraiture
  • Public Heritage
  • Cultural History
  • American Material Culture
  • Philadelphia
  • Quaker material culture
  • The History of Photography

Courses Taught

  • AM ST/HUM 307   American Art
  • AM ST 400      America to 1765
  • AM ST 401      Revolution and the Early Republic, 1765-1815
  • AM ST 480      Museum Studies
  • AM ST 491W   Themes and Eras: The City
  • AM ST 533      American Civilization in the 18th Century
  • AM ST 550      Public Heritage
  • AM ST 570      Topics in American Art: Painting
  • AM ST 570      Topics in American Art: Decorative Arts and Material Culture
  • HIS 03           American Nation: Daily Life in America, 1650 to the Present

Publications and Research

Selected Publications  

  • Quaker Aesthetics: Reflections on a Quaker Ethic in American Design and Consumption.  Philadelphia, PA:  University of Pennsylvania Press, 2003 (co-edited with Emma Lapsansky).
  • “Patina and Persistence: Miniature Patronage and Production in Philadelphia, 1840- 1860,” in Sven Beckert and Julia Rosenbaum, eds., The American Bourgeoisie: Distinction and Identity in the Nineteenth Century (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010), 63-85.
  • “The Silhouette and Quaker Identity in Early National Philadelphia.” Winterthur Portfolio 43:1 (Spring, 2009), 41-78.
  • "The Social Meanings of Portrait Miniatures in Philadelphia, 1760-1820," in Ann Smart Martin and J. Ritchie Garrison, eds., American Material Culture: The Shape of the Field (Winterthur, DE: Winterthur Museum, 1997), 195-223.
  • “John Ramage” and “Benjamin Trott,” in American National Biography (New York: Oxford University Press, 1999).

Selected Exhibitions

  • Installations of Prints and Paintings Gallery, 2001-2009, Winterthur Museum, Winterthur, DE
  • Currier & Ives: The Sporting Prints,   March-June, 2001, Winterthur Museum, Winterthur, DE
  • Steamboat Vacations: Excursions on the Chesapeake, April 1999-Jan. 2000, Maryland Historical Society, Baltimore, MD
  • Auguste Edouart and the American Silhouette Tradition, 1995-2000, National Portrait Gallery, Washington, DC