Exit Report

Women's History in the Digital World conference, May 2015.
Bryn Mawr, my postdoctoral home. [Women’s History in the Digital World conference, May 2015.]
This month marks the end of my two-year Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) Postdoctoral Fellowship at Bryn Mawr College. Twice a year, CLIR asks all fellows to report on our accomplishment, goals, and challenges, and I’ve decided to make public and expand upon my most recent entry, the exit report. Keeping a copy here, in my little corner of the internet, is a way for me to document the end of one chapter, and also provide future CLIR postdoc applicants a glimpse into the possibilities of such fellowships in the small liberal arts college context. [And if you’re reading this wondering about the many paths of the CLIR fellows, I highly recommend two blog posts from my cohortmates: Emily McGinn on the “interstitial PhD,” and Rachel Deblinger on alt-ac advocacy.] Continue reading “Exit Report”

Black at Bryn Mawr in the News

Black at Bryn Mawr and other campus history projects, including those represented in our NCPH 2016 Working Group “Campus History as Public History” are featured in Corinne Ruff’s June 21, 2016 article, “Historians of Slavery Find Fruitful Terrain: Their Own Institutions” for The Chronicle of Higher Education.

When I talked to Ruff at the beginning of June, the most important point I wanted to stress was the variety of campus history models emerging; not every project comes out of an R1 school with a commission, faculty support, or funding. That there are, in fact, a growing number of student-centered models for this work is one reason I’m disappointed that Ruff didn’t name the founders of our project at Bryn Mawr — Emma Kioko and Grace Pusey — whose dedication, research, and creativity fueled this project from start to finish, even after their graduation.

The article is only available to Chronicle subscribers, but I’ve made a PDF available here.

#campushistories #ncph2016

2016-NCPHSHFG-Program-Cover-e1444750374114This week I’m in Baltimore for the NCPH annual meeting, “Challenging the Exclusive Past,” co-organizing the working group Campus History as Public History with Caitlin Cohn (University of Minnesota), LaQuanda Cooper (UMBC), and Anne Mitchell Whisnant (UNC-Chapel Hill). Representing nearly 20 campus history projects from Massachusetts to Oklahoma, and many points in between (see our map), the working group is a first step in imagining how to offer resources for public historians working in a variety of institutional contexts–from K-12 schools to public and private colleges and universities.

For me, this group has already provided an opportunity to reflect on the projects I’ve worked on and advised at the University of Chicago and Bryn Mawr College, including On Equal TermsCloseted/Out in the Quadrangles, and Black at Bryn Mawr. Follow our NCPH conversation with the hashtags #ncph2016 #campushistories (which I’m collecting using Storify), and read the group’s case statements over on the NCPH blog, History @Work.   Continue reading “#campushistories #ncph2016”

Community Day of Learning 2016

Faculty_and_students_from_the_Bryn_Mawr_Summer_School_for_Women_Workers_in_Industry
Faculty and students at the Bryn Mawr Summer School for Women Workers in Industry (1930), via Bryn Mawr College Special Collections.

For a second year, the Greenfield Digital Center will be supporting history programming for the 2016 Bryn Mawr College Community Day of Learning, In/Visible: Class on Campus, Class in Our Lives. Can new archives and historical research expand our notion of campus histories? Join us on Tuesday, February 23 during the first two sessions (room locations and session times will be updated online, here) Continue reading “Community Day of Learning 2016”

Digital Library Federation Forum Talk online

“College Women: A Collaborative, Cross-Institutional Archives Portal,” the DLF Forum talk I gave with Rachel Appel (Bryn Mawr College) and Joanna DiPasquale (Vassar College), is now available online via The University of British Columbia Open Collections repository. Our presentation begins at 00:14:50.

History in Public

How do you teach campus history? In just a few week’s time, visitors will have access to a more robust course website; for now, see the course description here.

[1/19/16 update: my syllabus is now posted as a PDF – I’d love feedback and am happy to acknowledge so many colleagues whose work has inspired my thinking about this class and its assignments.]

Black at Bryn Mawr: What’s Next?

I’ve been invited by the Bryn Mawr College Pensby Center to kick off this year’s Diversity Conversations programming with a look at the past, present, and future of the Black at Bryn Mawr project. During 2015-2016, I will continue to manage the project, providing new research and integrating it with my teaching and the work of the Greenfield Digital Center. I feel the loss of the project’s creators, Emma Kioko ’15 and Grace Pusey ’15 greatly — their energy and expertise made Emma’s idea for a Black history walking tour real, and far more successful than we ever could have imagined at this time last year. Our students graduate, and move on in their research and careers; talk of sustainability for campus history projects in the small liberal arts college environment must reflect this.

For those who can not attend the conversation, I am making my slides available via Slideshare, and welcome comments and further questions. Today’s presentation also dovetails with the work I am just beginning as a co-organizer of the 2016 NCPH Working Group “Campus History as Public History,” which is taking applications through October 15, 2015. Can we create best practices for these kinds of projects?

As always, the conversation continues on Twitter: #BlackatBrynMawr and #campushistories.

cross-posted from Black at Bryn Mawr

Project Update: College Women

College women beta site 6-11

In June, my Special Collections colleagues and I announced the launch of College Women: Documenting the History of Women in Higher Education (collegewomen.org), a project of the seven institutions once known as the “Seven Sisters” colleges. With a one-year Foundations planning grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities — based on a grant proposal written by my predecessor at Bryn Mawr, Dr. Jennifer Redmond — we developed a collaborative archives portal that brings together digitized student materials drawn from the libraries of the seven partner institutions: Barnard, Bryn Mawr, Mount Holyoke, Smith, Vassar, Wellesley, and Radcliffe (now the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University).

Over the summer, as we saw our first users begin to explore the site, we were also busy putting the finishing touches on a white paper documenting this collaboration for the NEH Division of Preservation and Access, Humanities Collections and Reference Resources. With the white paper, we made the case for finding ways to collect geographically disparate collections in a vital, sustainable, and open-source subject-specific site, and over the long term, using that site to stimulate significant new work in women’s history.

To read more, download the “History of Women’s Education Open Access Portal Project” from the Bryn Mawr College repository, here. Continue reading “Project Update: College Women”

Summer Research on Storify

Exploring materials for child readers at the American Antiquarian Society, June 2015 (photo via @AmAntiquarian).

With the support of two weeks paid research leave from Bryn Mawr College Special Collections, I was able to participate in two research seminars over the past month that will help me move forward my dissertation research into new projects (more on those soon!)

For the moment, I’m using Storify to share the conversations started in Worcester and New York:

June 21-26, 2015
Reading Children: Summer Seminar in the History of the Book in American Culture (#PHBAC15)
American Antiquarian Society (Worcester, MA)

[View the story “Reading Children: The 2015 Summer Seminar in the History of the Book in American Culture” on Storify]

June 29-July 2, 2015
2015 Summer Institute in Digital Humanities
New York Metro American Studies Association / New York University (New York, NY)

[View the story”NYMASA 2015 Summer Institute: The Digital City” on Storify]

Now that I’m back at Bryn Mawr for the rest of the summer, I’ll be working on my new course for the Department of HIstory, “History in Public” (Spring 2016) and continuing research for Black at Bryn Mawr, the project that inspired this course. There’s a Storify for that too: view “Black at Bryn Mawr” on Storify.