Historian; professor of history. Born– February 16, 1952, Hazel Green. Parents– Robert D. and Mary Ann Graham Norrell. Married Kelly Dowe, August 6, 1977. Children– four. Education– University of Virginia, B.A., 1974; M.A., 1978; Ph. D., 1983. Professor of history at the University of Alabama, 1986-1998; at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, after 1998. Member of the Organization of American Historians and the Southern Historical Association. Received the Robert F. Kennedy Book Award, 1986, and the Booker T. Washington Legacy Prize, 2006.

Contemporary Authors online.

The Alabama Journey: State History and Geography. [Fourth-grade textbook]. Yellowhammer Press, 1998.

The Alabama Story:  State History and Geography.  Yellowhammer Press, 1993.

Eden Rise. NewSouth Books, 2012.

The House I Live In:  Race in the American Century.  New York:  Oxford University Press, 2005.

James Bowron:  Autobiography of a New South Industrialist.  Chapel Hill:  University of North Carolina Press, 1991.

The Making of Modern Alabama.  Yellowhammer, 1993.

A Promising Field: Engineering at Alabama, 1837-1987.  University of Alabama Press, 1990.

Reaping the Whirlwind:  The Civil Rights Movement in Tuskegee.  New York: Knopf, 1985.  Revised edition, 1998.

Up from History:  The Life of Booker T. Washington.  Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2009.

We Want Jobs! A Story of the Great Depression. Austin, TX:  Raintree/Steck-Vaughan, 1993.


Opening Doors: Perspectives on Race Relations in Contemporary America.  University of Alabama Press, 1991.