Thanks go to Michael Hattem for providing the statistics for this post. Michael not only produces The JuntoCast, but also manages much of the formatting, editing, and other technical details of The Junto.
We should begin by acknowledging new members. Since beginning with eighteen founding members, The Junto has since grown to twenty-six regular contributors. This past year, we welcomed Nora Slominsky and Christopher Minty into the Juntoist ranks.
In terms of blog traffic, The Junto grew in every category for a third year running. The blog will top 300,000 page views in a year for the first time in 2015, with 884,360 views since its launch in December 2012. The Junto is expected to surpass one million(!) views sometime in April 2016. We have published 192 posts this year, with the average post receiving 1500 views. That is over 150,000 words of original content dedicated to early American history contributed by almost fifty individuals. While most of our traffic comes from the United States, the blog saw visitors from 174 different countries in 2015. In addition, over 70,000 Google searches have resulted in visits to The Junto in 2015. The Junto was also invited to sponsor two panels at the Society for US Intellectual History this past year, another first for the blog.
In 2015, we hosted six roundtables: Dunn’s A Tale of Two Plantations, Graphic History, Digital Pedagogy, The Origins of the American Revolution, Narrative History, and Academic Book Week. There were also a record number of guest posts this year (30), including posts by founders of their own academic history blogs like Keith Grant and Jacquelyn Reynoso (of the newly-launched Borealia blog) and Keisha Blain (of the AAIHS blog). Other popular guest posters included Kevin Gannon, Vaughn Scribner, Kimberly Alexander, and Abby Chandler. More established guest posters this year included Ed Baptist, Ben Carp, Andrew Schocket and Billy G. Smith, and the late C. Dallett Hemphill, who generously contributed a piece offering publishing advice to junior scholars. Since our “founding,” over 80 individual guest posters have contributed to the blog. We look forward to further opening up this platform to current graduate students and junior scholars throughout the field of early American studies in the coming year. As always, you can use the form on our About page to inquire about guest post submissions.
The JuntoCast also continued to grow this year topping 50,000 downloads. The podcast moved from a monthly to semi-monthly schedule, adding a shorter Extra! episode every month. Highlights included an episode discussing Hamilton’s legacy with Ken Owen, Michael Hattem, Roy Rogers, Nora Slominksy, and Joanne Freeman, as Lin-Manuel’s Miranda’s Hamilton has piqued interest in Alexander Hamilton. (You can find various Juntoists’ reports on Hamilton here and here.)
Over the last three years, our writers and commenters have contributed to innumerable discussions about a wide variety of topics related to early American history. Indeed, three years after launching the blog, it continues to grow and provide a digital platform for early Americanists regardless of their geographical location or institutional standing. Back in December of 2012, Ben Park hoped The Junto would become “a vibrant community for the field of early American studies,” which our readers and commenters have helped make a reality. As always, we would like to use this anniversary to thank all of our readers for their continued support as we look forward to another productive year!