Gender and Midwestern History

The entire premise of this blog is: Doing Women’s History in the American Midwest. Yet I spend a lot of time wondering whether regional identity really matters when thinking about gender identity. In 1978, at the dawn of women’s historiography, historian D’Ann Campbell thought so, at least in the American West. Others have argued thatContinue reading “Gender and Midwestern History”

Digital Tools for Civic Engagement

Last week I attended the second national workshop for the Consortium on Digital Resources for Teaching and Research. Sponsored by the Council of Independent Colleges and funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the national workshop brings together librarians, staff, and faculty from liberal arts colleges across the country to develop digital collections using SharedContinue reading “Digital Tools for Civic Engagement”

Aloha, Jacksonville!

Unleash a historian in an archive and you never know what she’ll find. I recently stumbled upon this copy of He mau Himeni e ori ia Iehova, a 60-page, pocket-sized hymnal published in the Hawaiian language on Oahu, Hawaii in 1826. A hand-written inscription indicates it was a gift to Illinois College from a Mrs. Blatchely,Continue reading “Aloha, Jacksonville!”

Atomic Boscawen

Indulge me this week while we depart from the 19th century and enter the 20th, to one of my pet projects: rural civil defense. Today, Boscawen is a lovely community of about 4,000 people, a twenty-minute drive north of Concord, New Hampshire. Eighteenth century homes line the main street, anchored on the north side of town by the CongregationalContinue reading “Atomic Boscawen”

Return to Boscawen, Part 1

This is the first in a series of blog posts on my recent visit to Boscawen, New Hampshire, where I learned about the first two preceptresses of the Jacksonville Female Academy, Sarah Choate Crocker (1833-1835) and Emily Preston Price (1835-1837). Today’s post offers an introductory photo essay to establish a sense of place and showContinue reading “Return to Boscawen, Part 1”

The Power of Networking (or Not)

In Learning to Stand and Speak, historian Mary Kelly noted that alumnae associations from women’s schools reinforced “relationships they had forged at the intersection of female learning and female friendship.” Educational leaders of the 1830s and 1840s, like Sarah Sleeper of the New-Hampton Female Seminary, believed the combined intellectual powers within female networks could spark within theContinue reading “The Power of Networking (or Not)”