Growing up in south Louisiana and southern Illinois, Nicholas was first struck as a child by the past in the present when he viewed the death mask of Napoleon during a school field trip to the New Orleans Cabildo. After living in the Northeast, the Deep South, the Midwest, and the West Coast, Nicholas returned to New Orleans where his childhood recollections of the built landscape were transformed by moving into former slave quarters. He went on to pursue his second and third bachelor’s degrees in Interdisciplinary Studies and History with honors at the University of New Orleans. Nicholas is now a PhD candidate in the Department of African and African American Studies at Harvard University, where his work focuses on urban slavery, the built environment and the archives of colonial New Orleans. His work has been supported by the Charles Warren Center for American History, the Historic New Orleans Collection, and Tulane University’s Center for the Gulf South.
Given the interdisciplinary nature of his department, Nicholas has led sections for four years in disciplines ranging from African American history and anthropology, to musicology, culinary studies and sociology, always maintaining a firm commitment to historical thought and writing. He was awarded the Certificate of Distinction in Teaching twice from Harvard’s Derek Bok Center, and is particularly keen to work in one-on-one situations with students regarding their note-taking, critical thinking and writing strategies for courses, exams and admissions applications.
When not working his way through city archives, Nicholas enjoys walking among the cemeteries and live oaks, good conversation, live music, and sketching the local architecture.