Photo by Sharona Jacobs

Hi there! I’m Megan Kate Nelson, a writer, historian, road cyclist, and cocktail enthusiast.

I am the author of The Three-Cornered War: The Union, the Confederacy, and Native Peoples in the Fight for the West (Scribner, 2020), which was a Finalist for the 2021 Pulitzer Prize in History.

My new book, Saving Yellowstone: Exploration and Preservation in Reconstruction America was published by Scribner on March 1, 2022, the 150th anniversary of the Yellowstone Act, which created the first national park in the world. Saving Yellowstone has won the 2023 Spur Award for Historical Nonfiction, and is one of Smithsonian Magazine‘s Top Ten Books in History for 2022.

I am an expert in the history of the American Civil War, the U.S. West, and popular culture, and have written articles about these topics for The New York Times, Washington Post, TIME, The AtlanticSlate, and Smithsonian Magazine.

A fellow of the Society of American Historians, I am also a regular guest on radio shows and TV documentaries about western history and popular culture.

Before leaving academia to write full-time in 2014, I taught U.S. history and American Studies at Texas Tech University, Cal State Fullerton, Harvard, and Brown. I earned my BA in History and Literature from Harvard University and my PhD in American Studies from the University of Iowa.


Contact: mkn at



Had a marvelous time last night at the Society of American Historians annual dinner. SUCH fun to see @nataliapetrzela @scharffv and to meet @joannebfreeman IRL for the first time! #history #historybooks ...

I am súper excited to be going to #crestedbutte for #MtnWords2023 next week!

I’ll be in conversation with fellow writers about the future of western lands, and giving a workshop on pitching and writing Op-eds.

And getting inspired by novelists, poets, and non-fiction writers. Huzzah! @towniebooks

#bookstagram #booksbooksbooks #bookfestival

The Lincoln police log continues to delight. ...

Happy Mother’s Day to my mom, who has always supported my #booknerd ways … ❤️🎉📚 ...

Saturday lunch in the Seaport ...

My first trip on the T in who knows how long and I run into Andy Graybill!

*I should note - Andy lives in Dallas.


I will miss having this place just down the road


This error message is only visible to WordPress admins
Error: Access Token is not valid or has expired. Feed will not update.