Marr Faculty ImagePaul Marr

Office: 110 Shearer Hall
Phone: 717-477-1656

Curriculum Vitae: download as pdf


PhD, University of Denver
MS, University of North Texas
BA, University of North Texas


I was hired by the department in 1996, amid much wailing and gnashing of teeth.  My teaching responsibilities cover a wide spectrum within the discipline: transportation, world regions, and Latin America, quantitative methods, medical , and historical geography. My research interests tend to revolve around a single theme: abandoned transport landscapes. I am continually surprised by the lengths to which people will go in their efforts to build transport systems in hostile environments. I have several areas of research interest within this general theme:  the development of transport infrastructure in Colorado during the gold mining boom of the late 1800s, transport development in colonial Pennsylvania, commodity flow on the Pennsylvania canal system during the middle 1800s. I also have an interest on the impact that transport changes have on development on the Meseta Purépecha in Michoacán, Mexico. Recently I have developed several research projects in northern Chile. The first is the development and abandonment of the nitrate industry in the Atacama desert, while the second is the abandonment of Aymara villages on the Andean dry puna. More locally, I have always been fascinated by graveyards and have been using grave markers for people who died prior to 1800 to reconstruct local demographic changes in south-central Pennsylvania.

Teaching & Research Interests

  • Transportation Geography
  • Latin America
  • Historical Geography
  • Medical Geography


GEO 101: World Geography 
GEO 201: Geography of Latin and South America 
GEO 310: Transportation Geography 
GEO 402: Medical Geography
GEO 441: Quantitative Methods
GEO 532: Disease and Environment

Selected Publications

Marr, Paul. 2009. In search of Fort Morris. Material Culture. (In press).

Jantz, Richard, Paul Marr, and Claire Jantz. 2009. Body proportions in recent Native Americans: Colonization history vs. ecogeographical patterns. In: Human Variation in the New World: a Meeting of Archaeology and Biological Anthropology. Edited by Benjamin M. Auerbach. Center for Archaeological Investigations Occasional Paper Series.

Ross, Michael and Paul Marr. 2008. Socioeconomic Conditions on the Pennsylvania Frontier: The Germans and Scots-Irish of Cumberland County, 1765-1775. The Middle States Geographer. 41: 1-8.

Marr, Paul, Scott Drzyzga, George Pomeroy, and James Biles. 2008. Economic and Transportation Impact of Warehousing on Rural Pennsylvania. Center for Rural Pennsylvania, Harrisburg, PA. 170p.

Marr, Paul and John Burchette. 2008. The Wiconisco canal revisited: An examination of the 1879 Wiconisco canal survey map book. Canal History and Technology Proceedings. 27: 5-26.

Marr, Paul. 2007. Ghosts of the Atacama: The abandonment of nitrate mining in the Tarapacá region of Chile. The Middle States Geographer.40: 22-31.

Jantz, Claire and Paul Marr. 2007. Gentrification and neighborhood dynamics in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The Middle States Geographer. 40: 68-77.

Marr, Paul and Christopher Sutton. 2007. Changes in accessibility in the Meseta Purépecha region of Michoacán, Mexico: 1940 – 2000. Journal of Transport Geography. 15(6): 465-475.

Marr, Paul. 2007. The King’s highway to Lancaster: A graph-theory analysis of colonial Pennsylvania’s road network. Journal of Transport History. 28(1): 1-20.

Selected Presentations

2009  Fort Morris Found? The Search for Shippensburg’s Elusive Colonial Fort. Eastern Historical Geography Association Meeting. Pipestem, WV.

Fort Morris Found? The Search for Shippensburg’s Elusive Colonial Fort. Association of American Geographers, Middle States Regional Meeting. New Paltz, NY.

Finding Fort Morris: The Search for Shippensburg’s Lost Colonial Fort. Association of American
Geographers Annual Meeting. Las Vegas, NV (presentation).

2008   Factors Impacting the Long-Term Survival of Chile’s Historic Nitrate Oficinas. Annual Meeting of the Eastern Historical Geography Association. Baton Rouge, LA. With Claire Jantz. (presentation).

Economic Conditions on the Pennsylvania Frontier: 1765-1775. Association of American Geographers, Middle States Regional Meeting. Millersburg, PA. (presentation).

Demographic Changes on the Pennsylvania Frontier, 1730-1800. Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting. Boston, MA (poster).

The Wiconisco Canal Revisited. Canal History and Technology Symposium. Lafayette College, Easton, PA. (presentation).

2007  Ghosts of the Atacama: The Abandonment of Nitrate Mining in the Tarapacá Region of Chile. Association of American Geographers, Middle States Regional Meeting. Reading, PA. With Claire Jantz. (presentation).

The King’s Highway to Lancaster: A Graph-Theory Analysis of Colonial Pennsylvania’s Road Network. Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting. San Francisco, CA (poster).

Do Trunk Length-Leg Length Proportions Reflect Climate Adaptation in Native North Americans? American Association of Physical Anthropologists Annual Meeting. Philadelphia, PA. with Richard Jantz and Claire Jantz. (poster).

Funded & Ongoing Projects

2009      Population Concentration, Village Abandonment, and Accessibility in the Colchane Region of Northern Chile. 
                        Project Participants: Paul Marr and Claire Jantz
                        Funding Source: University research and Scholarship Program
                        Funding Level: $16,660

2008      Landscape Influences on the Collapse of the Nitrate Mining Industry of the Tarapacá Region of Chile.
                        Project Participants: Paul Marr and Claire Jantz
                        Funding Source: State System of Higher Education Professional Development Grant
                        Funding Level: $5,862

2007      Economic and Transportation Impacts of Warehousing in Rural Pennsylvania.
                        Project Participants: Paul Marr, Scott Drzyzga, George Pomeroy, James Biles
                        Funding Source: Center for Rural Pennsylvania, Center for Land Use
                        Funding Level: $47,180

Community and Professional Service

  • Member: SU Geography & Earth Science Dept. Curriculum Committee
  • Member AAG
  • Secretary, Middle States Division AAG, 2009-p
  • University Promotions Committee (chair), 2008-2010
  • Shippensburg Historical Society Board of Directors, 2009-p
  • University Forum, 2004-2007
  • Director of International Studies Program, 2000-2003

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