ISU Historians on the Go: August Edition


Maxwell in DC

History major Logan Maxwell (pictured here on the Speakers’ balcony of the U. S. Capitol) spent his summer in Washington, DC, working as an intern for Sen. Joni Ernst. His duties have included attending legislative briefings on education, energy, and veteran’s affairs. He has also doing work with constituents over mail and phone, and carrying communications and documents between Senator Ernst and other Senators and with the Office of the Vice President at the Capitol.

Courtwright in Nebraska

Prof. Julie Courtwright attended an NSF workshop on “Great Plains: An Environmental History,” held at the University of Oklahoma in Norman. The event featured eighteen scholars from Canada, Germany, and the U.S. whose work has been moving scholarship away from declension as the predominant method used to examine the region’s history. Her paper, “Blows Like Hell: The Windy Plains of the West,” will be published in the conference proceedings by the University of Oklahoma Press. Workshop participants also visited the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve near Pawhuska, Oklahoma, and the headquarters of the Osage Nation.

Hilliard in Boston

Prof. Kathleen Hilliard continues to research in Boston, where she the holds the 2017-2018 Suzanne and Caleb Loring Research Fellowship offered jointly by the Boston Athenæum and Massachusetts Historical Society. She recently gave a talk about how she is using Athenæum collections to support the research for her current book project, Bonds Burst Asunder: The Revolutionary Politics of Getting By in Civil War and Emancipation, 1860-1867. This book examines the transformation of southern political economy during the era of the American Civil War and African American emancipation, exploring how crisis and transition exposed weaknesses in slavery’s cruel paternalist bargain.

Belding in Germany

Doctoral candidate Michael Belding spent June and July in Germany taking an intensive German-language course at the Goethe-Institut in Schwäbisch Hall, Germany, a small city in the state of Baden-Württemberg (in the southwestern part of the country, bordering Switzerland and France). During the eight weeks of training he was placed into two of the highest-level classes the institute offers, developing his language skills by researching, writing, and giving presentations. Michael tells us he found this to be great practice for deciding what information is really important and what is the most elegant yet information-laden way to give it. Classes were held Monday through Friday, giving him time to visit Ulm, Mainz, Stuttgart, the Hohenzollern castles at Hechingen and Sigmaringen, and Nuremberg. A few of his excursions were topical to his research on how agricultural practices and ideas, perceptions of the environment and landscape, and notions of citizenship and nationhood are connected.

Duxbury in Iowa

Doctoral candidate Brandon Duxbury co-presented his research into the human stories behind the ISU Land Grant Project, an Extension initiative to recover the original land-grant owners in Iowa. He spoke, along with Bailey Hanson, a systems analysis in the Geospatial Technology Program, at the Iowa Technology and Geospatial Conference in West Des Moines. Their talk can be found here: Telling the Land Grant Story through Story Maps

Marshall in Nicaragua

Graduate student Sydney Marshall spent July in Nicaragua where she conducted research for her MA thesis. She is investigating the feminist movement in Nicaragua during the revolution and found useful material in the Instituto de Historia de Nicaragua y Centroamericana (IHNCA) at the Universidad Centroamericana (UCA) in Managua, Nicaragua.

Meanwhile, in Ames…

Prof. Jeremy Best recently blogged about his experiences working with the History Unfolded project of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Students in his History of Modern Germany class located and uploaded articles from Iowa newspapers covering events posted on the History Unfolded website. Dr. Best writes about the work of four History majors, Mara Kealey, Lucas Eivins, Conor Duffy, and Jack Bruner in his post, found here: History Unfolded at Iowa State University