Alys Beverton is a PhD candidate at University College London. Her thesis focuses on perceptions of Mexico in U.S. political discourse from 1863 to 1896. She is particularly interested in how U.S. Americans constructed images of Mexico as a way of expressing different interpretations of their own national identity. She also examines how ideas about the United States' hemispheric role intersected with and influenced the process of disunion and reunion in the United States during the Civil War era.

Award Experience: BAAS Postgraduate Travel Award

When I found out I had been awarded the BAAS Postgraduate Travel Award my first feeling was, unsurprisingly, elation. As a student of nineteenth-century U.S. politics I viewed my proposed two week visit to the Library of Congress, Washington D.C., as a pilgrimage to my research Mecca. But beneath my excitement was a ripple of uncertainty. Continue reading

“When We Knew No North Or South”: Veterans of the U.S.-Mexican War at the 1876 Centennial

To mark 4th July, Alys Beverton (University College London) discusses the 1876 celebrations in Philadelphia marking one-hundred years since the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Amongst the heat and noise were over two hundred veterans of the U.S.-Mexican War 1846-48. They had travelled from thirty-three different states and territories, and were weary from their journeys. But the Centennial was not what had brought these veterans to Philadelphia on that sunny July day. For them, the real event – the third annual reunion of the National Association of Veterans of the Mexican War – would take place the following day. Continue reading