Tag Archive

oral history

Let’s Go Shopping: Stories of Yesteryear Q&A

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Editor’s Note: Our digital media editor Nicole Belolan primarily grew up in rural Pennsylvania, about a 45-minute drive from Wilkes-Barre. As a child, she remembers going frequently to the Wilkes-Barre mall since shopping was limited in her smaller community. When she read about the programming and exhibition at the Luzerne County Historical Society about Wilkes-Barre’s history as a shopping destination, she wanted to learn more. Read More

Veterans’ perspectives, and the great task remaining

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Army nurse Norma J. Griffiths-Boris returned from Vietnam not just with haunting memories of unpreventable death—smells of burned flesh, sights of traumatic head wounds—but also with a powerful impression of her non-traditional work environment. At war, she and fellow nurses held positions of authority. Read More

Teaching Public History to Sophomores

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In my undergraduate public history course at the State University of New York at Cortland, sophomores usually make up the majority of students. Several of these students have not yet taken our “welcome-to-the-history-major” historical methods class. Our history department requires all our majors to take Introduction to Public History (HIS 280) in order to graduate, and students only need one history survey course before they sign up for this class. Read More

Disrupting authority: The radical roots and branches of oral history

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Oral history, like public history, is now old enough to have its own history, its own founding narrative. As one might expect from a field so deeply devoted to challenging incomplete and exclusive narratives, oral historians are now asking what is left out of their own history and filling in some of the gaps they have found. Read More

Robert Kelley Memorial Award: Reflections from Don Ritchie

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Whenever a public historian asks me whether it’s worth the time and effort to run for office in a historical association, or to serve on a committee, I strongly recommend giving it a try.  Over the nearly forty years I spent at the Senate Historical Office, I calculate that I spent almost half of that time also serving in one elected office or another in various historical associations and beyond that on any number of standing or ad hoc committees.

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Public history on Broadway (Part 2)

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My recent review of the Georgia Social Studies Standards, as part of my work at the Museum of History and Holocaust Education, galvanized my desire to reflect on the importance of the Broadway musical, Allegiance, which tells the story in fictionalized form of George Takei’s family’s experience in internment camps during World War II. Read More

"Why this topic?": Inspiration and growth through writing history

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As I scrolled through my list of unread emails a couple weeks ago, I paused on a subject line that was at once nostalgic and saddening: “A Celebration of the Life of Dr. Vivian O. Windley.” Dr. Windley was a well-respected educator and highly regarded volunteer at the New York Public Library’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. Read More