Loyola University Chicago

Department of History

Women, Gender and Sexuality

Timothy J. Gilfoyle

Title/s:  Professor

Office #:  Crown Center 511

Phone: 773.508.2232

Email: tgilfoy@luc.edu

CV Link: CV Gilfoyle_2022


Timothy J. Gilfoyle (Ph.D. (1987), B.A. (1979), Columbia University) is professor and former chair of history at Loyola University Chicago where he teaches American urban and social history.  He was named Loyola Faculty Member of the Year in 2018 and is the former president of the Urban History Association (2015-16).  Gilfoyle's research has focused on the development and evolution of various 19th-century urban underworld subcultures and informal economies, exemplified by A Pickpocket's Tale: The Underworld of Nineteenth-Century New York (W.W. Norton, 2006)City of Eros: New York City, Prostitution, and the Commercialization of Sex, 1790-1920 (W.W. Norton,1992);  and most recently The Urban Underworld in Late Nineteenth-Century New York: The Autobiography of George Appo (Bedford/St. Martin’s Press, 2013).  Gilfoyle’s interest in urban planning and public space led to Millennium Park: Creating a Chicago Landmark (University of Chicago Press and the Chicago History Museum, 2006).  He has published more than 100 articles and reviews in journals such as American Quarterly, Prospects, New York History, The Missouri Review, and the Atlantic.

Gilfoyle writes a regular "Making History" feature in Chicago History based on oral history interviews he collects for the Chicago History Museum. He is an associate editor of the Journal of Urban History (responsible for assigning recently published books in U.S. urban history for review), a co-editor (with Lilia Fernandez and Amanda Seligman) of the "Historical Studies in Urban America" series of the University of Chicago Press, and has served on the editorial boards for New York HistoryThe Encyclopedia of New York City (Yale University Press, 1995; second edition, 2010), The Encyclopedia of Chicago History (University of Chicago Press, 2004), and the online Oxford Research Encyclopedia of American History.

Gilfoyle is a trustee of the Chicago History Museum (formerly the Chicago Historical Society) and a former member of the executive board of the Society of American Historians. He was previously a member of the board of directors for the Chicago Metro History Education Center (1996-2016). He has been a Minow Family Foundation Fellow (2001-02), a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellow (1998-99), a Senior Fellow at the National Museum of American HistorySmithsonian Institution (1997) and a N.E.H./Lloyd Lewis Fellow at the Newberry Library in Chicago (1993-94). He is an elected fellow of the Society of American Historians (2011) and the American Antiquarian Society (2007).

He also leads the Midnight Bike Ride, a semesterly historical bicycle tour of Chicago.

Research Interests

United States, urban history, history of sexuality, American social history.

Selected Publications

Oxford Encyclopedia of American Urban History, editor (Oxford University Press, 2019).

The Urban Underworld in Late Nineteenth-Century New York: The Autobiography of George Appo with Related Documents, editor (Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s Press, 2013).

The Flash Press: Sporting Men’s Weeklies in the 1840s, coauthored with Patricia Cline Cohen and Helen Lefkowitz Horowitz (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2008).

A Pickpocket’s Tale: The Underworld of Nineteenth-Century New York (New York: W.W. Norton, 2006; paperback 2007).

Millennium Park: Creating a Chicago Landmark (Chicago: University of Chicago Press and Chicago Historical Society, 2006).

City of Eros: New York City, Prostitution and the Commercialization of Sex, 1790‑1920 (New York: W.W. Norton, 1992; paperback, 1994)

"White Cities, Linguistic Turns, and Disneylands: Recent Paradigms in Urban History," Reviews in American History, vol. 26, no. 1 (March 1998), 175-204; and Louis P. Masur, ed. The Challenge of American History (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Univ. Press, 1999), 175-204; reprinted as “The New Paradigms of Urban History,” in Howard Chudacoff and Peter C. Baldwin, eds., Major Problems in American Urban and Suburban History, second edition (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2005), 19-34.