- Lucy Somerville Howorth: New Deal Lawyer, Politician and Feminist from the South (2003) co-author
- Mississippi Women: Their Histories, Their Lives (2003, 2009) co-editor with Elizabeth Payne, two volumes of essays
- Ellen Woodward: New Deal Advocate for Women (1995)
- Pat Harrison: The New Deal; Years (1978)
Martha Swain lives in Starkville, Mississippi. She is a graduate of Starkville High School and Mississippi State College (now MSU). She holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in History from Vanderbilt University. She first became a high school teacher in Florida, where she was on the staff of History Institutes at Stetson University for six summers and at Rutgers University for one summer.
Swain then moved to Texas, and for twenty-one years she was on the faculty of Texas Woman’s University. After returning to Starkville in 1995, she taught at Mississippi State University.
Swain is the author of two non-fiction books on the New Deal, Pat Harrison: The New Deal; Years (1978) and Ellen Woodward: New Deal Advocate for Women (1995) and co-author of Lucy Somerville Howorth: New Deal Lawyer, Politician and Feminist from the South (2003). She is also the co-editor of two volumes of essays, Mississippi Women: Their Histories, Their Lives (2003, 2009) and has written a number of book chapters and journal articles on New Deal subjects and Southern women’s history. She is a past president of the Southern Association for Women Historians and the recipient of a distinguished senior faculty award at Texas Woman’s University.
Among her awards are the 1994 Eudora Welty book prize at Mississippi University for Women, the 2002 Dunbar Rowland Award from the Mississippi Historical Society for lifetime contributions to Mississippi History, and the 2004 Mississippi Humanities Council’s Chair’s Award for contributions to public humanities programs. She served as president of the Mississippi Historical Society in 2005-06 and is a long-time member of the review board of the Journal of Mississippi History. She also has been a member of the board of review of the Journal of Southern History.
- Lucy Somerville Howorth: New Deal Lawyer, Politician and Feminist from the South
- Mississippi Women: Their Histories, Their Lives by Elizabeth Anne Payne (Editor), Martha H. Swain, Marjorie Julian Spruill