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OAH Statement on Collective Bargaining and Part-Time, Adjunct, and Contingent History Faculty

The Organization of American Historians has released a statement on Collective Bargaining and Part-Time, Adjunct, and Contingent History Faculty.

Whereas the Organization of American Historians (OAH) is a professional society whose mission is dedicated to the promotion of "excellence in the scholarship, teaching, and presentation of American history," and to the encouragement of "the equitable treatment of all practitioners of history"; and...

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Posted: December 7, 2015
Tagged: News of the Organization


OAH Statement on Campus Carry

The Executive Board of the Organization of American Historians strongly supports the statement endorsed by numerous scholarly organizations expressing deep concern about laws permitting individuals to carry guns in college classrooms and throughout college campuses.

A full list of those scholarly organizations as well as the OAH's full statement can be found here. 

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Posted: December 7, 2015
Tagged: News of the Organization


In Memoriam: Cliff M. Kuhn

OAH member Cliff Kuhn passed away on Sunday, November 8 2015. He was 63 years old. Professor Kuhn was the Executive Director of the Oral History Association and professor of history at Georgia State University. He served as co-chair of the 2014 Annual Meeting Local Resource Committee. Several obituaries and remembrances are posted below.

Atlanta Journal-Constitution Local Obituary 

Georgia State University Statement

'Atlanta Loses Its Greatest Listener: Cliff Kuhn, 1952-2015', Tropics Of Meta

'Cliff Kuhn, local historian who gathered Atlantans' tales and stories, has died', Creative Loafing

 

Posted: November 20, 2015
Tagged: In Memoriam


In Memoriam: Lois Green Carr

Lois Green Carr, Historian for Historic St. Mary's City, recently passed away at the age of 93. Dr. Carr served as the Historian for Historic St. Mary's City for 45 years. During that time published and co-authored numerous books and papers about the Maryland region, among them the book Robert Cole's World which was the recipient of many awards. In 2000, Dr. Carr was inducted into the Maryland Women's Hall of Fame and much of her work is still essential reading for scholars of early American History.

Memorial Services celebrating her life will take place at two locations. There will be a service at 4 pm on September 19 at the re-construction Brick Chapel at Historic St. Mary's City with a reception following at the 1676 State House. Tours will be offered prior to the service at St. Mary's City of the various exhibit sites Dr. Carr played a major role in interpreting. A second Memorial Service will be held in Annapolis at 1 pm on September 20 at the Maryland State Archives.

Dr. Carr's full obituary can be read here.

Posted: August 26, 2015
Tagged: In Memoriam


In Memoriam: Francis Paul Prucha

Father Francis Paul Prucha, SJ, life member of the American Historical Association and long-time member of the history department at Marquette University, died on July 30, 2015, at the age of 94. A specialist in the relationship between Native Americans and the United States government, Prucha published or edited more than twenty-five books. His two-volume The Great Father: The United States Government and the American Indians won the Ray Allen Billington Award from the Organization of American Historians and was one of two finalists for the 1985 Pulitzer Prize in history. Prucha published books on nearly every aspect of Native Americans' relationships with white Americans, ranging from military campaigns to trade relations, from treaties to treaty medals, and from education to missionary work. He also published numerous volumes of documents, bibliographies, maps, and guides to researching Native American history.

A native of northern Wisconsin, Prucha served in the U. S. Army Air Force during the Second World War. He recieved his PhD from Harvard University in 1950, the same year in which he entered the Society of Jesus. He came to Marquette University in 1960 and remained there for the rest of his career, serving as department chair for several years and winning the Award for Excellence in Teaching in 1973. Among his many honors was being named a Fellow of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences in 1986, and receiving honorary degrees from several institutions, including Creighton, Merrimack, Marquette, Loyola-Chicago, and the College of the Holy Cross.

Prucha had a long and distinguished relationship with the Western History Association, serving on the editorial board of the Western Historical Quarterly and as the organization's twenty-second president in 1982-1983. The WHA's Arrington-Prucha Prize recognizes the best journal article published each year in Western religious history.

Posted: August 26, 2015
Tagged: In Memoriam


OAH Executive Committee Issues Statement on Tenure, Academic Freedom, and Shared Governance—and the University of Wisconsin System

The Executive Committee of the Organization of American Historians strongly supports the statement on academic freedom and tenure issued by more than twenty of our fellow scholarly organizations. The academic freedom secured through tenure and a partnership between faculty and administration in governing standards is a linchpin of intellectual inquiry in American higher education. Together, tenure and shared university governance stand at the heart of advanced research and vigorous teaching, as has been recognized explicitly in Wisconsin since its Board of Regents' report of 1894.

The OAH Executive Committee shares the grave concerns voiced by our fellow scholarly associations that the proposed changes to the University of Wisconsin tenure system will irreparably damage protections for free inquiry in one of the nation's most distinguished public universities, undermining its model achievements in research, scholarship, and teaching. A threat to the continuation of tenure at the University of Wisconsin threatens the vitality of all higher education in the United States, for erosion of academic freedom anywhere threatens free inquiry as a principle and practice everywhere.

The statement from the twenty scholarly associations supported by the OAH Executive Committee can be found here.

Update: The OAH has recieved several letters thanking the Organization for our support. 

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Posted: July 10, 2015
Tagged: News of the Organization, News of the Profession


In Memoriam: David Kyvig

OAH member David Kyvig died on June 22, 2015. He was emeritus professor of history at Northern Illinois University, having begun teaching there in 1999. He won the Bancroft Prize in 1997 for Explicit and Authentic Acts: Amending the U.S. Constitution, 1776-1995 (Lawrence, 1996). Professor Kyvig served on several OAH committees and was a former OAH Distinguished Lecturer.

Read more about Professor Kyvig's career at AHA Today.

Posted: July 9, 2015
Tagged: In Memoriam


In Memoriam: Allen Weinstein

Allen Weinstein, former Archivist of the United States, died on June 18, 2015. Professor Weinstein was the ninth archivist of the United States and served from February 2006 to December 2008. He was the author of Perjury: The Hiss-Chambers Case (1978).

Read more about Professor Weinstein's career at the Washington Post and in a statement issued by David S. Ferriero, current Archivist of the United States.

Posted: July 9, 2015
Tagged: In Memoriam


OAH LGBTQ Committee Issues Statement on U.S. Supreme Court Decision in Obergefell v. Hodges

The Organization of American (OAH) Historians Committee on the Status of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) Historians and Histories celebrates the decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in Obergefell v. Hodges, declaring same-sex marriage legal in all 50 states and making marriage equality a reality.

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Posted: June 29, 2015
Tagged: Advocacy, News of the Organization, News of the Profession


U.S. Supreme Court Rules on Same-Sex Marriage

In a historic civil rights ruling issued today in Obergefell v. Hodges, the U.S. Supreme Court made marriage a right available to all Americans, regardless of sexual orientation. The OAH Executive Board submitted an amicus curiae brief to the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the petitioners written by historian and OAH member George Chauncey on the history of discrimination against gay men and lesbians in America. This brief was cited specifically by Justice Anthony Kennedy in his majority opinion in today's decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, as was the historical scholarship of OAH president-elect Nancy Cott and other prominent American historians.

Read the OAH LGBTQ Committee statement here.

Read the U.S. Supreme Court decision here.

Read the amicus curiae brief here.

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Posted: June 26, 2015
Tagged: News of the Organization, News of the Profession, Advocacy


OAH Members Respond to the Redskins Name Debate

During the business meeting at the 2015 OAH Annual Meeting, members voted to pass the following resolution asking the Washington Redskins to change their name. 

The Organization of American Historians hereby adds its voice to the growing demands by Native American organizations, our sister disciplines, and conscientious people of all ethnic backgrounds, to change the name and logo of the Washington "Redskins."

In a subsequent meeting, the OAH Executive Board voted to let the resolution stand as passed by the membership.

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Posted: June 6, 2015
Tagged: Advocacy


OAH Members Named as Dean at Shoreline Community College and appointed Policy Research Manager with the American Civil Liberties Union

Amy Kinsel has been named Dean of Social Sciences, Library and Parent Child Center, at Shoreline Community College. Read more here.

Megan French-Marcelin, PhD, U.S. History, Columbia University, has been appointed Policy Research Manager with the American Civil Liberties Union as part of the ACLS Public Fellows program. Read more here

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Posted: June 5, 2015
Tagged: Clio's Kudos


OAH Members Honored as Pulitzer Prize Winner and Finalist

OAH member Elizabeth A. Fenn, an associate professor at the University of Colorado-Boulder, has received the 2015 Pulitzer Prize in history for her work, Encounters at the Heart of the World: A History of the Mandan People (2014). Fenn's study explores the history of the Mandans, a Native American tribe in the Dakotas. She holds the Walter S. and Lucienne Driskill Chair in Western American History. Fenn is also the coauthor, with Peter H. Wood, of Natives and Newcomers: The Way We Lived in North Carolina before 1770 (1983) and the author of the award-winning Pox Americana: The Great Smallpox Epidemic of 1775-82 (2001).

Sven Beckert, also an OAH member, was nominated as a Pulitzer Prize finalist for Empire of Cotton: A Global History (2014), which argues that slavery was crucial to the dynamism of the industrial revolution. He is the Laird Bell Professor of History at Harvard University.

Please join us in congratulating OAH members Fenn and Beckert on their accomplishments!

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Posted: May 1, 2015
Tagged: News of the Organization, News of the Profession, Clio's Kudos


OAH Members in the News

Congratulations to the three current OAH members who have been named ACLS Fellows for 2014-2015!

OAH member and University of Vermont Associate Professor of History Felicia Kornbluh is featured in a video on the significance of the 1964 New York World's Fair and the civil rights protest that took place on its opening day. Watch "Forgotten Conflict" here.

More Clio's Kudos here>>

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Posted: April 25, 2015
Tagged: Clio's Kudos


OAH Lecturer Sven Beckert Awarded 2015 Bancroft Prize

OAH member and lecturer Sven Beckert has been awarded the 2015 Bancroft Prize for his book, Empire of Cotton: A Global History. The Bancroft Prize is an annual award given out by Columbia University. The candidates "are judged in terms of the scope, significance, depth of research, and richness of interpretation they present in the areas of American history and diplomacy."

For more information on Professor Beckert's book and for more information on the Bancroft Prize, click here.

Posted: April 17, 2015
Tagged: Clio's Kudos


OAH Executive Committee Issues Statement of Opposition to Indiana's "Religious Freedom Restoration Act"

On Thursday, March 26, Indiana Governor Mike Pence signed the "Religious Freedom Restoration Act" despite exceptionally strong protests of the Republican Mayor of Indianapolis, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA, headquartered in Indianapolis), Visit Indy (the Indianapolis convention bureau), churches, and many individuals presenting multiple petitions. As the statements of these individuals and groups indicate, the Act does not reflect the views of the overwhelming majority of Indianapolis and Bloomington residents or of Indiana's many other cities that have worked hard to welcome residents of many backgrounds and views, creating a highly diverse state. The OAH Executive Committee has issued the statement below regarding the Act and is writing the Governor and the leaders in the Indiana House and Senate indicating its strong disapproval of this Act.

"The Executive Committee of the Organization of American Historians, headquartered in Bloomington, Indiana, strongly urges the Indiana Legislature and Governor Mike Pence to repeal the 'Religious Freedom Restoration Act' signed into law March 26, 2015. The Act carries alarming potential for abuse in the form of discrimination on many grounds--religion, race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation. The OAH strongly condemns any legislation that can be employed to discriminate against any person, whether on the basis of 'any exercise of religion' or simple personal ethnic or racial prejudice. The OAH Executive Committee urges the immediate repeal of this Act to ensure fair and equitable treatment of all residents of the State of Indiana and visitors to the state."

An article was written in The New York Times on the reactions of Indiana citizens and businesses. That article can be read here. 

The Organization of American Historians is an external agency of Indiana University and is housed on the Bloomington, IN campus. The President of IU, Michael McRobbie, issued a statement about the passing of the new law. It can be read here.

In an unusual move, the Indianapolis Star on March 31, 2015 placed an editorial on its front page demanding that this bill be fixed - read more here.

Earlier articles in the Indianapolis Star about the "Religious Freedom Restoration Act":

The text of the new law can be read in full here.

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Posted: March 28, 2015
Tagged: News of the Organization, Advocacy


In Memoriam: Camille Guérin-Gonzales

Professor Camille Guérin-Gonzales, a long-time OAH member, recently passed away on February 24. 

She earned her doctorate at UC-Riverside in 1985, writing the dissertation that eventually appeared in book form, Mexican Workers and American Dreams: Immigration, Repatriation, and California Farm Labor, 1900-1939. Her real love was teaching, which she did at University of Colorado-Boulder, Oberlin College, University of Michigan, UCLA, and University of Wisconsin-Madison. At UCLA, she was among six founding faculty members of the César Chávez Department of Chicana/o Studies. She joined the faculty at UW-Madison in 2001, retiring in 2014.

Memorials may be made to Workers' Rights Center of Madison, Somos Un Pueblo Unidos of New Mexico, Human Rights Campaign, or Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin.

Professor Guérin-Gonzales' full obituary can be viewed here.

Posted: March 17, 2015
Tagged: In Memoriam


OAH Amicus Brief Filed in Same-Sex Marriage Case

The OAH has submitted an amicus brief to the Supreme Court in the same-sex marriage case, James Obergefell, et al. vs. Richard Hodges, Director, Ohio Department of Public Health. Written by OAH member George Chauncey, professor of history and American studies at Yale University, the brief focuses on the history of discrimination against gays. Opening oral arguments are expected to be heard in the last week of April, with a decision to be issued the last week of June. 

Read the brief in full.

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Posted: March 9, 2015
Tagged: News of the Organization, News of the Profession, Advocacy


In Memoriam: Jann Warren-Findley

Public historian and OAH Member Jannelle Warren-Findley passed away on February 4, 2015. Dr Warren-Findley earned her Ph.D in American Studies from The George Washington University and was a Fullbright scholar, teaching in both Sweden and at the University of Maryland in England. She was an Associate Professor of History at Arizona State University for more than 20 years. Dr Warren-Findley served as President of the National Council on Public History and on the Executive Board of the Organization of American Historians. She was also one of the founding directors of the National Collaborative for Women's History Sites in 2004 and served until 2007.

Here full obituary can be viewed here.

The National Collaborative for Women's History Sites 'In Memoriam' can be viewed here.

Posted: February 18, 2015
Tagged: In Memoriam


In Memoriam: Otto H. Olsen

Otto H. Olsen, a scholar of Reconstruction, African American and civil rights history, passed away at age eighty-nine on December 4, 2014, in Gainesville, Florida. A graduate student of C. Vann Woodward, he wrote a pathbreaking study of Albion W. Tourgée, the "carpetbagger" lawyer civil rights advocate who organized bi-racial coalitions and fought for black civil rights during Reconstruction in North Carolina (Carpetbagger's Crusade, 1965); edited an important collection of documents, titled The Thin Disguise (1967), on the monumental 1896 Supreme Court case of Plessy v. Ferguson; and authored influential articles on the incidence of slave ownership and on various aspects of Reconstruction in North Carolina. His edited collection Reconsruction and Redemption in the South (Louisiana State University Press, 1980) surveyed Reconstruction in the various southern states. Otto earned a bachelor's degree from Columbia University and a doctorate from Johns Hopkins. He taught at various universities before accepting a position at Northern Illinois University, where he spent the majority of his faculty years.

His students remember Otto as much for his sterling personal qualities as his scholarship. Otto had provided dangerous service in the merchant marine during World War II. As a graduate student at Columbia he resisted conformity and worked for labor rights and black equality during the McCarthy era. Of Norwegian descent and of humble, working-class origins, he championed social justice issues throughout his life. In his retirement years he wrote a critique of Cold War mythology but also put the legacy of Presidency of John F. Kennedy in a positive light. To us and his other graduate students, Otto modeled a politically engaged intellectual who was a master of the craft of historical research and writing. He remained a supportive mentor and friend throughout his life. Otto combined humanism, humility, and humor with challenging political insights. He is sorely missed. Otto Olsen is survived by his wife Corrine M. Olsen and two children and grandchildren and a sister.

Michael K. Honey, University of Washington Tacoma
Joseph P. Reidy, Howard University

 

Posted: February 17, 2015
Tagged: In Memoriam