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News of the Organization

Stay up to date with news of the Organization of American Historians through our “News of the Organization” section.

OAH Issues Statement Regarding Steven Salaita

The OAH Executive Committee was authorized to prepare a statement addressing Steven Salaita’s termination at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. After preparation of the statement, the OAH Executive Board approved sending the statement to the Chancellor at the University of Illinois and representatives at the American Association of University Professors.

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Posted: December 16, 2014
Tagged: News of the Profession, News of the Organization


Vicki Ruiz Selected as a 2015 National Women's History Month Honoree

Vicki Ruiz, Educator and Pioneer in Latina History, has been named an Honoree for National Women's History Month for 2015. Her achievements will be recognized and celebrated by the National Women's History Project on March 28, 2015 at the Autry National Center in Los Angeles.

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Posted: November 17, 2014
Tagged: News of the Profession, News of the Organization


The OAH Strongly Urges Support of the Adjunct Faculty Loan Fairness Act of 2014

The Organization of American Historians strongly urges support of S. 2712, the Adjunct Faculty Loan Fairness Act of 2014, recently sponsored by Democratic Senator Richard Durbin of Illinois to allow adjunct, contingent and other part-time faculty to participate in the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) Program. As it currently stands, the PSLF program encourages graduating students to apply for and continue to work full-time in public service jobs.  After making 120 payments (10 years of student loan payments) graduates may qualify for forgiveness of the remaining balance due on their William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan Program while employed full-time by selected public service employers in such careers as the military, public education, public health and law enforcement.

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Posted: October 23, 2014
Tagged: News of the Profession, News of the Organization


Resolution of Appreciation to the Journal of American History

The Association for Documentary Editing passed a resolution of appreciation commending the Journal of American History for its support of the field of documentary editing. The Association thanks the Journal of American History for providing their members with important peer reviews of the work they do.

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Posted: October 22, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization


OAH Statement on the AP Test

The Organization of American Historians supports the Revised Framework for the Advanced Placement and U.S. History Course and Exam. In response to recent criticism of the College Board, the OAH affirms that expert teachers and scholars of good will designed and conducted the extensive process of revision. The OAH is proud to be associated with these dedicated and professional teachers and historians. Many are OAH members.

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Posted: August 29, 2014
Tagged: News of the Profession, News of the Organization


President Obama Honors Three OAH Past Presidents with National Humanities Medals

On Monday, President Barack Obama will present National Humanities Medals to historians David Brion Davis, Darlene Clark Hine, and Anne Firor Scott. All three honorees have served the Organization of American Historians (OAH) as president and are lifetime members. "We join all Americans in applauding the contributions these three individuals have made to their areas of research, and we thank them for their legacy of support to OAH," said Patricia Limerick, OAH President. Learn More >

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Posted: July 25, 2014
Tagged: News of the Profession, Clio's Kudos, News of the Organization


Your Help Urgently Needed--July 24 Comment Deadline

The U.S. Department of Education has issued a list of supplemental funding priorities, and unfortunately, history and civics are not included. This list of supplemental priorities and definitions to be used in awarding discretionary (competitive) grants made by the Department repeals their 2010 list. Please help the OAH and the National Coalition of History salvage history and civic education as priority funding areas. Read the OAH's letter to the Department of Education here. Please comment by July 24 on the importance of funding history and civics education by going here.

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Posted: July 22, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization, News of the Profession


Update on Proposed NEH Budget Cuts

The OAH just recieved the following advocacy update from Stephen Kidd, Executive Director of the National Humanities Alliance. "Today, the House Appropriations Committee passed an amendment that rescinds the proposed $8 million cut to the National Endowment for the Humanities. Thanks to the many of you who responded to last week's action alert, the amendment passed with substantial bipartisan support.This is a very important step in preserving NEH's capacity. In the coming weeks, we may need to call on you to contact your elected officials again as this funding bill proceeds through Congress and faces additional challenges."

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Posted: July 16, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization


2016 OAH Annual Meeting Call for Proposals--"On Leadership"

The theme for the 2016 OAH Annual Meeting to be held April 7-10, 2016 at the Rhode Island Convention Center in Providence, RI, is "On Leadership." Proposals will be accepted online between December 1, 2014 and January 23, 2015. To read the full CFP as well as general information about submitting proposals and presenting at the OAH Annual Meeting, please use the link below.

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Posted: July 15, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization


AHA - OAH Summer Reception

The Fourth Annual AHA - OAH Summer reception will be held on July 29, from 3:30 to 6:30 pm in Washington, D.C. Take a break from your research or sightseeing and visit with fellow historians at the AHA headquarters on Capitol Hill. Adam Rothman, Associate Professor at Georgetown University, will be on hand to represent the OAH for the evening. For more information or to RSVP, please use the link below. Click for more information or to RSVP

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Posted: July 15, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization


Renew Early and Win

Back by popular demand! Renew your membership before the fall rush and be entered to win one of our great prizes. We have free registration to the annual meeting in St. Louis, a free night's stay during the annual meeting, Amazon gift certificates, and our grand prize, a Kindle Fire. Learn More >

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Posted: July 15, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization


Important OAH Award Deadlines

There are nineteen OAH Prizes and Awards that have deadlines beginning October 1, 2014, including our newest, the Mary Jurich Nickliss Prize in US Women's and/or Gender History (November 1 deadline) established this past spring at the 2014 Annual Meeting in Atlanta. Learn More >

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Posted: July 15, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization


Call for Proposals: Research and Write a Comprehensive Administrative History of Manzanar National Historic Site

Manzanar National Historic SiteThe Organization of American Historians (OAH) and the National Park Service (NPS) have worked collaboratively for nearly twenty years on a variety of projects that aim to make the presentation of American history at NPS sites and programs as current, nuanced, and effective as possible. The OAH and NPS presently seek a qualified scholar to research and write a comprehensive Administrative History of Manzanar National Historic Site located in Independence, California. Learn more >

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Posted: June 11, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization, News of the Profession


2014 National Underground Railroad Conference

The registration deadline has been extended to June 30! The OAH has partnered with the National Park Service's Network to Freedom Program, the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, and the Michigan Freedom Trail, to host the 2014 National Underground Railroad Conference, July 16-20 in Detroit, Michigan. The five-day conference—now in its eighth year—takes as its theme, "'I Resolved Never to Be Conquered': Women and the Underground Railroad." Learn more >

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Posted: May 30, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization, Meetings, Conferences, Symposia


OAH Program Committee Finalizes 2015 Program for St. Louis Meeting

The 2015 OAH Program Committee and the meetings staff have been busy in recent weeks finalizing the program for the 2015 OAH Annual Meeting in St. Louis (April 16-19). The theme of the meeting is "Taboos." More than 570 notices were sent during the week of May 19 to individuals regarding the status of their submissions for next year's conference. Read more >

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Posted: May 29, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization, Meetings, Conferences, Symposia


May 2014 OAH Outlook is Here

The latest issue of OAH Outlook will soon arrive in your mailbox. In it you will find OAH President Patricia Limerick's inaugural column in which she solicits your help in enlightening the public about the work of historians. The May issue also includes a look back at the successful annual meeting last month in Atlanta, provides updates on news of the organization—including actions taken by the OAH Executive Board at its spring meeting—and the latest advocacy news from Capitol Hill, the National Archives, and more. Read the May issue online >

Posted: May 29, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization


From the OAH President: "Professors—I Need Your Help!"

Patricia Limerick (Photo courtesy of Honey Lindburg)I am eager to do what I can to deepen public appreciation of you and your work. To pull this off, I need your help—which I will beg for a few paragraphs from here.

On February 15, 2014, The New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof started his column by using sixteen words to flatter academics, and then using eleven words to wound and dismiss them. "Some of the smartest thinkers on problems at home and around the world are university professors," he said. And then he moved in for the kill: "but most of them just don't matter in today's great debates." Read more >

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Posted: May 21, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization, News of the Profession


The National Coalition for History Provides Comment on Proposed Legislation Creating Women's History Museum

On May 7, 2014 the US House of Representatives voted in favor of House Resolution 863 to create a "Commission to Study the Potential Creation of a National Women's History Museum." The resolution, introduced by representatives Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), passed in the House by a vote of 383-33. The Senate is now considering the companion bill, S. 398, sponsored by Susan Collins (R-ME), to create a commission to study the creation of a proposed women's history museum on the National Mall in Washington, DC. The legislation is under the jurisdiction of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee which has not yet scheduled a markup of the bill.

The National Coalition for History (NCH) and its member organizations, which includes the Organization of American Historians, is concerned that the proposed eight-member bipartisan commission does not include any professional historians, and through its partnership with the  the OAH supports the amendments, outlined in the letter below, to strengthen the proposed legislation.

The NCH is also concerned that the legislation calls for considering a role for the National Women's History Museum (NWHM), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, in raising funds for the construction of the museum. Naming a specific nonprofit organization in the authorizing legislation inappropriately implies endorsement of the NWHM. (The NWHM has been mired in recent controversies, from the quality of its scholarship, to its ability to raise the needed funds.) In fact, the NWHM to date has only raised $14 million of the estimated $400 million it would cost to design and build the museum.

Finally the NCH suggests amending the proposed legislation to include a public comment component. 

The National Coalition for History has sent the following letter to Senator Collins and to the cosponsors of S. 398.



National Coalition for History 
400 A Street SE
Washington DC 20003
tel. 202 544-2422 ext. 116
http://www.historycoalition.org

May 16, 2014

The Honorable Susan Collins
United States Senate
413 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington DC 20510

Dear Senator Collins:

The National Coalition for History (NCH) would like to comment on S. 398, the "Commission to Study the Potential Creation of a National Women's History Museum Act of 2013." NCH is a consortium of over 50 organizations that advocates on federal legislative and regulatory issues. The coalition is made up of a diverse number of groups representing historians, archivists, researchers, teachers, students, documentary editors, preservationists, political scientists, museum professionals and other stakeholders.

NCH strongly supports the bill's intent of creating a commission to study the issue, as well as the ultimate goal of building a National Women's History Museum. Nevertheless, we have concerns with the bill in its current form, and would like to offer some constructive amendments to strengthen the legislation.

NCH is very concerned that the bill, as written, does not stipulate that any professional historians be appointed to the eight-member bipartisan commission. Any project to create a new national history museum should involve professional historians with expertise in women's history from the outset. Interpreting the past is vital to democratic debate and civic life, and scholars experienced in investigating and interpreting the past should be part of that process.

NCH is also concerned with Section 4(b)(2)(A) of the bill, which calls for considering a role for the National Women's History Museum (501)(c)(3) (NWHM) organization in raising funds for the construction of the Museum. It is unusual for the authorizing legislation for a museum commission to include the name of a specific non-profit in the section dealing with developing the fundraising plan. This was not the case with laws authorizing other new museums on the National Mall, including the National Museum of the American Latino, on which S. 398 is based. To include the NWHM in the language of the bill may be misinterpreted to suggest an endorsement that we feel is inappropriate. The NWHM has been mired in controversies regarding many aspects of its activities, from the quality of its scholarship to its ability to raise funds.  While we recognize the hard work the organization has done to bring the project this far, NCH recommends a fresh start if this important endeavor is to proceed towards a successful outcome.

Finally, we are concerned that there is no clear provision in the legislation to require the commission to seek, or provide the opportunity for, public comment. While seeking public input may be implied, it is too important to leave to chance. The commission's report can only be enhanced by involvement from the broad spectrum of citizens with an interest in the Museum.

To summarize, the National Coalition for History recommends three amendments which we feel will improve the bill:

  1. Section 3(c)(1)(B) describing the qualifications of commission members should be amended to include the language, "professional historians with expertise in women's history."
  2. Section 4 (b)(2)(A) of the bill, which calls for considering a role for the National Women's History Museum organization regarding fundraising, should be deleted.
  3. Include a mandate that the commission seek public input as part of its deliberations.

We appreciate the opportunity to provide these comments. The National Coalition for History and our member organizations stand ready to assist the commission to ensure that we achieve the ultimate goal of creating a world-class National Women's History Museum.

If you have any questions, please contact Lee White, the Executive Director of the NCH at 202-544-2422, x-116 or lwhite@historycoalition.org.

Sincerely,

John Dichtl, NCH Policy Board President
Lee White, NCH Executive Director


Posted: May 20, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization, News of the Profession


Nominating Board announces 2015 OAH Slate of Candidates

The OAH Nominating Board has announced the slate of candidates for the 2015 OAH election. In addition to voting for three candidates for executive board, OAH members will vote for candidates to the nominating board as well. (One in each pair will be elected for a total of three on both boards.) Balloting begins in December. Officers: President Jon Butler, professor emeritus, Yale University; Nancy F. Cott, Harvard University, President Elect; and Edward Ayers, University of Richmond, Vice President. View the full slate >

Posted: May 12, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization


Felix Armfield

We wish to thank our colleagues at the Association for the Study of African American Life and History  (ASALH) for allowing us to share this remembrance of Professor Felix Armfield, professor of history at Buffalo State, The State University of New York. Armfield was a longtime member of the Organization of American Historians, joining in 1996, and he served on the OAH Committee on Public History from 2001-2005.

May 6, 2014

Felix ArmfieldIt with great sadness that the ASALH family announces the loss of our former Executive Council member, Dr. Felix Armfield. Felix was an active and dedicated life member of ASALH and had been a member of the association for over thirty years.

A dedicated teacher-scholar, Dr. Armfield has been recognized for his teaching and service at Western Illinois University and Buffalo State College. Most recently, he was awarded the Hero Award from the Disability Services Office, The Students' Award for the Promotion of Respect for Diversity and Individual Differences, and the William Wells Brown Award from the Afro-American Historical Association of the Niagara Frontier.

Dr. Armfield was an active member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity. He was very passionate and dedicated to preserving the history and legacy of the fraternity. His most recent publication, Eugene Kinckle Jones: The National Urban League and Black Social Work, 1910-1940, honors the legacy of this important Black leader of the early twentieth century, but it also honors the legacy of one of the jewels of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.

Felix Armfield is survived by his father, Jasper Armfield, Jr. (Shirley), Belvoir, NC; his grandmother, Mrs. Christine Armfield, Greenville, NC; his sisters, Kimberly Armfield, Upper Marlboro, MD and Sandy McKenny, Fredricksburg, VA; one brother, Jeffrey Armfield (Venetia), New Haven, CT; his loving godmother, Shirley Hunter, Greenville,NC; and a family of aunts, uncles, nephews, nieces, cousins, and loving friends, including Quince Brinkley, Jacqueline McLeod, Bonita Durand, Ron Stewart, Diane "Cookie" Williams, and Bettye Gardner.

Services will be held on Saturday, May 10, 2014. The viewing/wake will be held at noon and the funeral will follow at 1 p.m. EST at Holly Hill Free Will Baptist Church, 755 Porter Road, Greenville, NC 27834 where Bishop James E. Tripp, Jr. presides. The burial will be at Burial Dancy Memorial Cemetery.

Expressions of sympathy can be sent to his grandmother, Ms. Christine Armfield, 563 Lake Road, #104, Greenville, NC 27834.

Felix possessed an unwavering commitment to his alma mater, 'dear ole NCCU', and the Association for the Study of African American Life and History. Therefore, instead of flowers the family requests that you send donations to the Felix Armfield ASALH-NCCU Fund that will support NCCU students' continuous participation in the ASALH. You may send your donations to: The Association for the Study of African American Life and History, 2225 Georgia Avenue, Suite 331, Washington, DC 20059. E-mail: info@asalh.net

Sylvia Y. Cyrus, Executive Director
Association for the Study of African American Life and History

Posted: May 8, 2014
Tagged: News of the Organization, In Memoriam