New Orleans to Memphis
on the Mississippi River

March 5 – 13, 2024

with Edward E. Baptist, Professor of American Studies

aboard the paddle-wheeled American Splendor

To reserve your space, contact CAU partner, Criterion Travel
Phone: 888-328-2089  |  Email

You have more to learn with eminent scholars on location

  • Click on "All the Details" to download the brochure for the full itinerary, tour details, and terms.

    This 9-day study tour by classic paddle-wheeler boat explores history and heritage from Pre-Civil War times through the present along the storied Mississippi River.

    This is a shared departure with peer universities. CAU's group will enjoy several exclusive elements as well as the opportunity to connect and learn with alumni, family, and friends from other esteemed institutions.

  • Travel with Cornell
    Education vacation

    In addition to Professor Ed Baptist, faculty from peer universities including Harvard and Dartmouth will present lectures that are open to all onboard. Also, Pulitzer Prize-winning author and presidential historian, Doris Kearns Goodwin will share a keynote address related to her book, "Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln."

  • Travel with Cornell
    Get swept up in the stories

    Begin in New Orleans, exploring the distinctive architecture of the French Quarter, the gorgeous homes of the Garden District, and the renowned National WWII Museum. Then cruise upriver on the American Splendor, visiting the lush landscapes of Bayou country; the city of Natchez, Mississippi, whose architectural grandeur reflects the Steamboat Era of the early 1800s; and Vicksburg, where a pivotal 47-day Civil War battle raged before control of the Mississippi River was taken by the North. Conclude in Memphis, exploring historic Beale Street to the rhythm of the Blues.

  • Travel with Cornell
    Learn more

    Professor Baptist will lead key site visits to the Whitney Plantation (the only former plantation site in Louisiana with an exclusive educational focus on slavery) and The Descendants Project, a non-profit working to influence inter-generational healing and flourishing of the Black descendant community in the Louisiana river parishes.

Travel with an Ivy League professor

  • Affectionately known as "Ed" by his students, Baptist is professor of American Studies in Cornell's College of Arts & Sciences. Leader of CAU's popular 2022 tour, "Turning Point: The Battle of Gettysburg," Ed will bring his expertise on the history of the 19th-century United States—and in particular on the history of the enslavement of African Americans in the South—to bear as you travel northward on the mighty Mississippi River. With a book in progress about the ripple effect of consequences for all Americans stemming from the expansion of slavery in the United States between the writing of the Constitution in 1787 and the outbreak of the Civil War in 1861, Ed is uniquely poised to share a perspective that is deeply relevant to our current times.

Learn on location: the lectures

  • Detailed information about what you'll learn on tour is coming soon!

Register now

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