Dr. Andrew Gulliford

Dr. Andrew Gulliford
Professor of History & Environmental Studies


  • Public History
  • History of the American West
  • Environmental History
  • Native American History
  • Museums & Historic Preservation
  • American Wilderness
  • History of American National Parks


  • Ph.D., Bowling Green State University, 1986
  • M.A.T., The Colorado College, 1976
  • B.A., The Colorado College, 1975


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About Dr. Andrew Gulliford

Gulliford is a professor of history at Fort Lewis College in Durango, Colorado and an affiliated faculty member in the Environmental Studies Program.

He teaches popular college courses in wilderness and environmental history and is the author of America’s Country Schools, Sacred Objects and Sacred Places: Preserving Tribal Traditions , and Boomtown Blues: Colorado Oil Shale , which won the Colorado Book Award. He also edited Preserving Western History , which was voted one of the best books on the Southwest by the Tucson-Pima County Library. His articles and photographs have appeared in national publications, including High Country News, Preservation, American Heritage, Colorado Heritage, and Montana.

He writes a regular monthly column titled “Gulliford’s Travels” for the Southwest life section of the Durango Herald, and some essays are picked up by the “Writers on the Range” syndicated column of High Country News. Gulliford also writes for Inside/Outside Southwest and Mountain Gazette.

Dr. Gulliford has received the National Individual Volunteer Award from the U.S. Forest Service for wilderness education and a certificate of recognition from the Secretary of Agriculture for “outstanding contributions to America’s natural and cultural resources.”

The governor appointed Dr. Gulliford to two terms on the National Register of Historic Places Review Board for the state of Colorado. Gulliford also has his 3rd federal appointment to the BLM’s Southwest Colorado Resources Advisory Council, where he represents environmental interests.

Andrew Gulliford has led tours across the West by canoe, raft, horseback, van, cruise ship, private train, and private jet for the Smithsonian Institution, the National Geographic Society, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and the Colorado Historical Society.

He regularly donates tours to raise money for the Durango Adult Education Center, American Red Cross, Western Colorado Congress, Fort Lewis College Foundation, Rocky Mountain Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), and Great Old Broads for Wilderness.

Gulliford's Travels

Dr. Gulliford spent the summer of 2019 researching for his next big project on the history of the 1.35-million-acre Bears Ears National Monument in southeast Utah. In 2016 President Obama declared it a monument, the first ever request to use the Antiquities Act (1906) by five Native American tribes. The goal was to preserve, protect, and interpret tribal sacred places and traditional gathering areas. In 2017 President Trump then shrunk the monument by 85%. Dr. G. will spend the next several years writing about the area's history with modern chapters about tensions related to competing uses of American public lands and Presidential executive authority granted by the Antiquities Act, which was signed into law by Dr. G.’s hero Theodore Roosevelt. The book is now out; please read the press release for more: Bears Ears | The University of Utah Press

He continues to hear from former students, and Dr. G. welcomes email contacts and connections. Like everyone in the History Department, he is proud of our students' successes. Email Dr. G. at Gulliford_a@fortlewis.edu

In the news

Just in time for your holiday dinner table, Andrew Gulliford, professor of History, tells the story of Colorado's famous cannibal, Alferd Packer, and how he became an "unlikely local folk hero." [11/11/20]

In 1918, influenza was a global challenge and public health crisis that had a severe impact on Four Corners communities, according to Professor Andrew Gulliford, who spoke to KSUT about the pandemic. [5/4/20]

Professor of History Andrew Gulliford's book The Woolly West: Colorado’s Hidden History of Sheepscapes won the 2019 Colorado Book Award for History. [5/29/19]

Professor of History Andrew Gulliford's book The Woolly West: Colorado’s Hidden History of Sheepscapes was chosen as the Outstanding Nonfiction category winner for the 2019 Western Heritage Awards, from the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. [2/20/19]

Professor of History Andrew Gulliford talked with Carbondale's KDNK public radio about the time Teddy Roosevelt spent in western Colorado on the centennial of the 26th U.S. president's death.[AUDIO] [2/18/19]

Professor of History Andrew Gulliford's new book, The Woolly West: Colorado's Hidden History of Sheepscapes, examines the history of the sheep industry in Colorado and the West. [8/1/18]

The sublime Yampa: Quiet canoe miles on a wild river, The Journal, August 14, 2017

As Lake Powell recedes, Glen Canyon reveals its secrets, Durango Herald, April 13, 2016. "The questionably named “Lake Powell,” or “Lake Foul” to a host of environmentalists, is receding. Slowly, inch by inch, Glen Canyon is coming back. And just like Katie Lee who explored it in the 1950s before the dam, I want to see all of it, too." Read full article...

FLC students ascend Fourteeners to raise mental health awareness, Durango Herald, November 11, 2015. "I have nothing but respect for Fort Lewis College students. We take young minds and hope to inspire and prepare students for a lifetime of learning and diverse careers, yet often our students inspire us. They lead by example and prove that the next generation is ready and capable to tackle our nation’s dilemmas." Read full article...

Gulliford: Caught wearing the wrong color, Summit Daily, January 11, 2015. "I knew we were in trouble when I saw the third snowshoe hare. It was almost noon on the first day of elk season back in early November. I had a knife, hunting rifle and adequate ammunition. Yet what I realized made the hair stand up on the back of my neck. I felt immediately threatened. As we all are." Read full article...

Stone messengers: Across wild landscapes, humans build cairns as markers, companions, Durango Herald, January 9, 2015. "When the Canadian government created the First Nations province of Nunavut above the Arctic Circle, the first postage stamps the new province issued were photos of inuksuit, or stone cairns." Read full article...

Exploring Tsankawi Ruin Clues to an ancient culture found on New Mexico’s Parajito Plateau, Durango Herald, September 15, 2014. "In the penetrating heat of early July, storm clouds brewed to the south. Summer monsoons had yet to arrive in northern New Mexico. The temperature stood at 95 degrees as I left the truck with full water bottles. It was mid-day, and I would see no one on the trail." Read full article... 

Culture clash in Moab: Tourism vs. oil and gas: Lessons from the Green River, Durango Herald, July 11, 2014. "As a benefit for the San Juan Mountains Association, we had organized a canoe trip on the Green River near Moab to paddle 60 miles from Geyser Springs to Mineral Bottom." Read full article... 

Making Ute history live: The enduring legacy of Clifford Duncan, Durango Herald, June 7, 2014. "Clifford Duncan passed away this winter, and with his passing went centuries of Ute cultural knowledge about land and landscape. A World War II veteran in his 80s living in Neola, Utah, near Fort Duschesne, he traveled across the West visiting public land managers, archaeologists and historians." Read full article... 


2015 - "Outdoors in the Southwest: An Adventure Anthology," published by University of Oklahoma Press, won the Colorado Book Award for best book in the Anthology category 

2014 - "Outdoors in the Southwest: An Adventure Anthology," won two New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards for best nature/environment book and best book about Arizona

Boomtown Blues: Colorado Oil Shale," published by University Press of Colorado, won the Colorado Book Award for best book in the Colorado/West category


Outdoors in the Southwest: An Adventure Anthology

Update: Environmental Studies and History Professor Dr. Andrew Gulliford won the 2015 Colorado Book Award for his anthology Outdoors in the Southwest: An Adventure Anthology. The book took the prize in the Anthology category at the awards, presented June 21 at the Aspen Institute's Doerr-Hosier Center, in Aspen. Read more

In 2014, Dr. Gulliford edited Outdoors in the Southwest: An Adventure Anthology, published by the University of Oklahoma Press.

Outdoors In The Southwest: An Adventure Anthology

About the Book

More college students than ever are majoring in Outdoor Recreation, Outdoor Education, or Adventure Education, but fewer and fewer Americans spend any time in thoughtful, respectful engagement with wilderness. While many young people may think of adrenaline-laced extreme sports as prime outdoor activities, with Outdoors in the Southwest, Andrew Gulliford seeks to promote appreciation for and discussion of the wild landscapes where those sports are played.

Advocating an outdoor ethic based on curiosity, cooperation, humility, and ecological literacy, this essay collection features selections by renowned southwestern writers including Terry Tempest Williams, Edward Abbey, Craig Childs, and Barbara Kingsolver, as well as scholars, experienced guides, and river rats. Essays explain the necessity of nature in the digital age, recount rafting adventures, and reflect on the psychological effects of expeditions. True-life cautionary tales tell of encounters with nearly disastrous flash floods, 900-foot falls, and lightning strikes. The final chapter describes the work of Great Old Broads for Wilderness, the Colorado Fourteeners Initiative, and other exemplars of “wilderness tithing”—giving back to public lands through volunteering, stewardship, and eco-advocacy.

Addressing the evolution of public land policy, the meaning of wilderness, and the importance of environmental protection, this collection serves as an intellectual guidebook not just for students but for travelers and anyone curious about the changing landscape of the West.

Dr. Gulliford Explains the Project

"Fort Lewis College has exciting new majors in Adventure Education and Environmental Studies. As a professor of History and Environmental Studies I sought to edit a book that would be useful in my American Wilderness class which teaches wilderness as an idea, an ideal, and a law. So thanks to a sabbatical in the fall of 2008, I was able to do the field research and fund raising to focus on a project involving some of the finest authors in the Southwest including Edward Abbey, Barbara Kingsolver, Terry Tempest Williams, Craig Childs, and others.

I also interviewed climbers, canyoneers, search and rescue volunteers, and a psychiatrist who spent 23 seasons in the Grand Canyon as a river guide. Outdoors in the Southwest  slowly evolved with major sections on wilderness, mountain hiking and climbing, deserts and canyons, river running, going solo, and giving back to public lands. Thanks to the Fort Lewis College Foundation I was able to pay students to write study questions for each section. Now the book is out, reviews are coming in, and I’m delighted that Outdoors in the Southwest is a finalist for the Arizona/New Mexico Book Awards in the category of nature/environment."