Eric Steven Zimmer, PhD

Eric Zimmer is a historian from the Black Hills of South Dakota. He holds a Ph.D. from the University of Iowa and is currently the A.B. Hammond Visiting Assistant Professor of Western United States History at the University of Montana.

Zimmer spent six years as a senior historian at the consulting firm Vantage Point Historical Services, Inc., where he worked on a variety of narrative, digital, oral, and exhibit-based history projects for clients across the United States. Since 2015, he has been a volunteer historian for the Rapid City Indian Boarding School Lands Project, an Indigenous-led community research initiative in his home town of Rapid City, South Dakota. He is also at work on a book called Red Earth Nation: Reclamation and Recovery on Meskwaki Land (University of Oklahoma Press, fc 2024). That project explores the remarkable story of the Meskwaki Nation, a Native American tribe in Iowa that bought back some of its homeland in 1857. The Meskwaki story offers context and insight for anyone interested in the modern movement to reclaim Indigenous lands in the US and elsewhere.

Zimmer’s scholarship and the collaborative projects with which he is affiliated have received high honors from the Western History Association, the Midwestern History Association, the National Council on Public History, the American Society for Environmental History, the American Association for State and Local History, and more. He has served as the primary grant author or co-PI on several projects, securing over $2.4 million in funding support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Windrose Fund, Monument Lab, the American Philosophical Society, the American Historical Association, the State Historical Society of Iowa, the Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research at the University of Iowa, and more. His work has appeared in the Washington Post, the Indian Country Today Media Network, and in several scholarly journals.

He can be reached at