Tracy Campbell specializes in twentieth century United States political and social history.After graduating from UK, he earned his Ph.D. at Duke University, where his dissertation advisor was Lawrence Goodwyn. He has written four books: The Politics of Despair: Power and Resistance in the Tobacco Wars (Kentucky, 1993); Short of the Glory: The Fall and Redemption of Edward F. Prichard, Jr. (Kentucky, 1998), which was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and was featured on NPR’s “Morning Edition”; Deliver the Vote: A History of Election Fraud, an American Political Tradition, 1742-2004 (Basic Books, 2005), and The Gateway Arch: A Biography (Yale, 2013), which was featured on NPR's "Weekend Edition" with Scott Simon, XM Radio's "The Bob Edwards Show," and was selected by the History Book Club. The Gateway Arch was also chosen as one of the "Best Books of 2013" by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and won the 2014 Missouri History Book Award.
In 2008, he served as George McGovern Visiting Professor of Public Leadership at Dakota Wesleyan University. He teaches courses in recent U.S. social and political history, as well as a UK Core course on "The Making of Modern Kentucky." In 2010, he received the "Great Teacher" award from the UK Alumni Association. Prof. Campbell is also Co-Director of the Wendell H. Ford Policy Research Center. At the Ford Center, he has organized symposia and lectures that connect history with current public policy debates. Some of those who have participated in these events are former Vice President Walter Mondale, former presidential candidate and U.S. Senator George McGovern, former U.S. Senator Walter Huddleston, former RNC Chair Mike Duncan, U.S. Senate Historian Donald Ritchie, and former OAH President William Chafe. In 2006, a symposium sponsored by the Ford Center on the legacy of the Church Committee was featured on C-Span. His current research project is a social and political history of the United States in 1942.
- The Gateway Arch: A Biography (Yale University Press, 2013).
- Deliver the Vote: A History of American Election Fraud, an American Political Tradition -1742-2004 (Basic Books, 2005)
- Short of the Glory: The Fall and Redemption of Edward F. Prichard, Jr. (Univ. Press of Ky., 1998)
- The Politics of Despair: Power and Resistance in the Tobacco Wars (Univ. Press of Ky., 1993)