John Davis is an environmental and architectural historian and assistant professor at the Knowlton School, where he teaches courses in landscape history. His primary research area is on technology, construction, and environment in the Americas in the modern era. Davis’s current book project is about military and civil engineering and environment in the U.S. South after the American Civil War, examining the physical processes of building that undergirded the central political metaphor of the Reconstruction Era. He is the coeditor of the volume Military Landscapes (Dumbarton Oaks/Harvard University Press, 2021). He is the author of numerous articles and essays, most recently publishing the article "Hope, Anger, and Engineering in a Reconstruction Landscape" in Buildings & Landscapes and "Owner, Occupier, Intruder: The Fight for US Public Lands" in Harvard Design Magazine.
Davis has lectured on landscape, environment, and engineering internationally, and his research has been supported by fellowships from the Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, where he was a Tyler Fellow from 2015-2017, and from the Charles Warren Center for the Study of American History at Harvard University. He holds a B.S. from the University of Virginia, and an M.Arch. and Ph.D. from Harvard University.