William G. Thomas III is an award-winning historian, author, and film producer. A native of Alexandria, Virginia, he writes about American history, law, slavery, and the Civil War. A 2016 Guggenheim Fellow, he is currently working on a book called Ordeal of Freedom: Slavery and American Law, 1789-1860 (Yale University Press), about enslaved families in Maryland who sued for their freedom in the decades after the American Revolution. A digital media historian, Thomas was co-editor of the acclaimed digital project, The Valley of the Shadow: Two Communities in the American Civil War. He has published essays and creative work in the American Historical Review, Civil War History, The Journal of Historical Geography, Educause Review, Inside Higher Education, The New York Times, and The Washington Post.
Thomas has taught at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the University of Virginia. He is a graduate of Trinity College (Connecticut) and received his M.A. and Ph.D. in History from the University of Virginia. He currently serves on the National Historical Publications and Records Commission of the National Archives and Records Administration and on the Board of Fellows of Trinity College.