About Margaret

Margaret is an author and historian of white settler background who has focused for over two decades on Indigenous child removal and family separation. Her work concerns government policies in the United States, Canada, and Australia that tore Indigenous children from their families and communities and sent them to distant boarding schools and other institutions. She also look at how these nations continued after World War II to separate Indigenous children from their kin and place them in foster care or adoption with settler families. I write, too, about how Indigenous women mobilized transnationally to reclaim the care of their children. Margaret’s most recent writing and projects delve into truth-telling, healing, and reconciliation efforts.

Margaret Jacobs
Photo by Craig Chandler

She collaborates with Rosebud Lakota journalist Kevin Abourezk on Reconciliation Rising, a multimedia project that showcases Indigenous people and settlers who are honestly confronting painful and traumatic histories and creating pathways to reconciliation. I am also the co-founder and co-director of the Genoa Indian School Digital Reconciliation Project

Margaret Jacobs is the Charles Mach Professor of History and the Director of the Center for Great Plains Studies at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL). I have been fortunate to receive support from the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the National Endowment from the Humanities, the Fulbright Program, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the Council on Library and Information Services. From 2015-16 Margaret was the Pitt Professor of American History and Institutions at Cambridge University in England. She was inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2019.