History Department Opportunities Spring 2016

(especially for History Majors)

Wunderli and Florence Murphy Scholarships — $1000 to $5000 dollars for next school year! Click on the link to apply. 




Last semester students completed internships at the Pioneers Museum, the Broadmoor Archives, the Air Force Academy, and the Colorado Springs Aviation Museum.
For more information, go to http://www.uccs.edu/history/undergraduate/internships_research_opportunities.html


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Congratulations Are In Order!

Congratulations are in order for some faculty and students in the History Department. Here are a few!

***Department graduate (B.A. and M.A.) and current Departmental Lecturer Amy Haines received an award from the Pike’s Peak Arts Council for COSTUME DESIGN!– one of a handful of awards given each year by the Pikes Peak Arts Council (at their 15th Annual ceremony held at Fine Arts center a few weeks ago).  Here’s the program note: Theatre:  Clothes Make the Character Award
 Amy Haines
 For costume design in the shows Psycho Beach Party, The Lying Kind, The Shadow, Detroit, Happy Days

***Yang Wei, Assistant Professor of History, and Patrick Lee, UCCS undergraduate student, have received a joint faculty/student research award, for Patrick’s work on a project (to be overseen by Prof. Wei) entitled Shifting Forces and Shifty Trade: The British East India Company’s Opium Trade in China and India as Origin of the Opium War

***M.A. students Jami Wilson and Julie Doellingen each have received travel grant awards from the Department (for $350 each), plus Julie received $400 from the Graduate School office, for research and conferences they will be attending. Julie will be using the funds to attend a special workshop at the Eastman Kodak House in Rochester, New York, in early December, for work towards her ongoing training in archival work with historic photographs

***Associate Professor Brian Duvick is one of two nominees from the College of LAS for a major research award from the National Endowment of the Humanities.


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Fountain Fairview Living History Event on Youtube

Here is a very nice video presentation of our recent Fountain Fairview Cemetery event, featuring event organizer Barbara Headle, Kim Sweetwood, Amy Haines, and others who engaged in historical re-enacting of the lives of those buried there.

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Living History — From Guest Poster Amy Haines

This is a post from former History M.A. Student and current departmental Lecturer Amy Haines, reflecting on her experience in the recent Fountain Fairview Cemetery Tour as a living history reenactor. You can find Amy’s history blog, “History in a Few Words,” by clicking on that link.  Currently, Amy is teaching in the Department an upper-division course in the history of the American West, and in the spring will be teaching History 4530, Civil War and Reconstruction. 

I recently had the privilege of participating in a fundraiser for the City of Fountain’s Fairview Cemetery as a living history interpreter. My background both as an historian, and as a formally trained actress, allowed me to delve into this project, and I’ve come away from it with a distinctly profound feeling of reverence for the woman I portrayed, and in particular for her sons.

The deep, meaningful connection I continue to experience toward this family I’ve never met, has made me pause in reflection, to contemplate the significance of how public history affects those who view it, and those who portray it. I am grateful when two aspects of my life can combine so seamlessly.  I have always used my historian’s mind and skills to research characters, plays, and the specifics of a theatrical production, but the ability to bring my stage skills back to my academic world is a rare and cherished event. When I was asked to portray Emma Maria McCarty Eubank for The Friends of the Fountain Fairview Cemetery’s (FFFC) annual Cemetery Crawl fundraiser I jumped at it.

The fundraiser is an event that I strongly believe in. Begun by Barbara Headle, a senior history instructor and her students four years ago after the cemetery had been vandalized, it exists to help fund conservation efforts, site improvements, and purchase equipment like surveillance cameras.  The cemetery holds descendants of the first settler families in the region, some of whom still have family in the area, and is both an historical treasure and spiritual repository for the community.

The theme of this year’s fundraiser, in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War, centered on veterans. There are approximately 175 veterans interred at Fairview, with their service spanning the Civil War to Vietnam. Six interpreters were chosen to portray veterans, or family members of veterans, whose task it was to then convey the life story of the man or woman they represented.

The day of the fundraiser was spectacular. The sunlight filtering through the trees was buttery, and the breeze barely touched the leaves. Occasionally, a dried leaf, tanned from the summer heat and curled, would fall from above, kissing the ground with a small scratch of sound. Crows spoke to each other from the tree-heights, and though traffic was near, it faded as the Veterans of Foreign War’s Color Guard began the presentation of colors. Taps rang out in the still morning air, the notes silvery and beautiful and haunting.

Each interpreter was stationed at the gravesite of the person they portrayed. I made my way to the Eubank family plot, the sixth, and last station on the tour. The still morning was peaceful as I waited for visitors. I reviewed my presentation several times in my head, going over my lines, checking dates, listing off the names of my character’s six children. I sat. And then the enormity of what I was about to do hit me. Emma Eubank was not a character. She had been a wife, a mother. I was sitting at the foot of her grave, asked to speak in her voice about her family, about two of her sons who fought in World War I. What I knew about her and her family had been gleaned from newspaper articles, census reports, draft registration cards, birth and death certificates, meticulously researched by the FFFC.  I had pieced together the various bits of information into a monologue, a narrative about Emma and her family, yet in my heart the Eubanks deserved to be more than bullet points of research.

The visitors sometimes came to my station in groups, some singly. I told them Emma’s story. With each telling I felt more, and more protective of the family. Between visitors I read the grave markers in the family plot: Robert, William, Jane, Florence (four of Emma’s six children); WT McCarty (her brother); Fred (her husband) and Emma who shared a marker together. All six markers, nine members of the family (including the girls’ husbands) together in that beautiful, shaded, peaceful ground. It was profoundly moving.

I told Emma’s tale to many visitors that day, as honestly as I could.  I came to realize that public history, living history, done in the right way, can connect both historians and the general public to a deeper understanding of our past. I’ve always had great respect and appreciation for the ordinary people who don’t often make it into history books, searching for the voices who traditionally are silent in the larger narratives we tell. But the act of translating facts, data, into a voice, has reminded me how much I love being an historian, and the enormous responsibility I have to properly, ethically, and diligently, pursue the discipline.

Public history provides an open doorway that many will comfortably step through. It is a more accessible, and less intimidating medium for many who would never wish to pick up a history book, to engage with the past. My first experience with living history has inspired and humbled me, and has given me a deeper connection to the people I represent as an historian, and those who come to view the history.

Thank you Emma.


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Opportunities for History Students!


  1. “Publish or perish! Wanted: History grad students to write segments of a UCCS/PPCC project to enhance student engagement and mastery of key concepts and points of view. Successful applicants will author short narratives on persons of interest that challenged prevailing ideologies in the past, such as Che Guevara and Siddhartha Gautama. Authors’ names will be credited in this interactive learning experience featuring immersive learning and some gaming mechanics. The project also provides a notable addition to CVs.” If interested, please contact Jared Benson (jbenson2@uccs.edu, or 459-2774.
  2. Long-time community activist Dave Munger is looking for a student to go through the archives of the Council of Neighborhood Organizations (CONO) and prepare a short history for their 50th Anniversary in May 2016. Dave can give you the details, but if interested first please contact me, Paul Harvey, pharvey@uccs.edu, and I’ll put you in touch. This project can be done as part of an History Graduate Internship (Hist 6995) next semester so you would receive academic credit – it could be your “elective.”
  3. Professor Minette Church, Anthropology (mchurch@uccs.edu), is looking for a “mature graduate student who would be interested in interning with the Heller Center, to help with everything from facilitating events and exhibits, to coordinating interdisciplinary collaboration, to working with docents, helping with grants and communicating with our budget and accounting people. Essentially they would get a broad experience working with a center for the humanities and historic house and collections. They would work with both the Faculty Director (me) and the Curator, once that person is hired.” There might be pay for the work (she is checking on that), but there also definitely could be academic Internship credit through Hist 6995. Please contact Minette Church if interested.
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4th Annual Fountain Fairview Cemetery Tour! Another Huge Success

Below is an article by Barbara Headle, head of the annual Cemetery Tour and genius who organizes the student-produced historical reenactments of people interred there. The Gazette covered the event here, and there’s some video there as well of “Mrs. H” in action. Through this event, thousands of dollars have been raised to restore cemetery headstones, purchase security equipment, and generally help the Cemetery association. This year’s event was to honor America’s veterans.

Volunteerism Is Not a Thing of the Past
Barbara Headle

Public History matters.  But, as a friend and colleague reminded me, not everyone knows what Public History is, or is not.  Done well, Public History is not about presenting history to the public in a kitschy, chain store “smiley face” fashion that leaves the “readers” feeling happy but unfulfilled.  Rather, good Public History makes history “meaningful to the general public.”  It engages the public audience and prompts them to negotiate the good, the bad, and uncomfortable parts of history; this may not always be what the public expects or wants, but at least they leave feeling something, they’re thinking; their history, our history, has meaning.

Public History matters.  So does volunteerism.  Just ask any of the current and graduated students and lecturers who volunteered their time, talents, and passion for history to participate in the Friends of Fountain Fairview Cemetery’s 4th Annual Historic Cemetery tour held on Saturday, September 26, arguably the most heartwarming and heart-wrenching event to date.  These committed students and staff stepped outside (literally!) the traditional academic setting to use “their skills as historians to interpret and preserve” the history of a community and its place in regional, national, and international arenas to a large and diverse audience.

This year the FFFC commemorated the anniversaries of the end of three wars: American Civil War (150 years), World War II (70 years), and Vietnam (40 years), and for good reason.  Fountain Fairview Cemetery is home to at least 176 veterans; of these, there are 13 Civil War (10 Union, 3 Confederate); 18 WWI (including 2 brothers); 51 WWII (including 3 women); 30 Korea; 35 Vietnam.  Nine of these veterans served in both WWII and Korea; 10 served in Korea and Vietnam; and 3 served in WWII, Korea, and Vietnam.

Now ask any of the volunteers listed below about their experience in doing public history, why they volunteer for a small community-oriented event, and why it matters to them as individuals and as historians.  Then ask them how many times they have volunteered for this annual event.  You might learn something new, you might be inspired, or both!

Students (Current):  John Garrett, Kim Sweetwood, Patrick Turner.  (Graduated): Amber Bradish, Lindsey Duncan, Megan Ishum, Tawnie Mizer, Maria Tobin, Travis Pollok, and Emilee Shindel.

Lecturers: Amy Haines, Robin Lynch, Nina Frischmann.

Thank you all for reaffirming volunteerism is not a thing of the past, for demonstrating Public History matters, and for earning comments like these:

“Wonderfully done by all – A very humble and respectful feeling …Thank you.”  “I’m so honored to have seen this tour.  My dad is … looking down at all your marvelous work…. Thanks for all you do.”  –Sandra Aragon Kruse, Chicago, Illinois, daughter of Sgt. Jose Rueben “Mark” Aragon, d. May 1965, Vietnam.

“Thank you for a wonderful tour! It was extremely insightful and I think the families of these veterans have been honored.” –A. Shamrock

“What a powerfully moving experience! Well done by all and thank you for all that you are doing to preserve and share this valuable history!” –L. Davis Witherow

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4th Annual Fountain Fairview Cemetery Tour

Save the Date: Saturday, September 26, 2015

 The Friends of Fountain Fairview Cemetery will host their 4th Annual Historic Cemetery tour on Saturday, September 26.  This year the Friends commemorate the 150th anniversary of the end of the Civil War.  UCCS history and geography students, faculty, and community members, volunteer their time and talents to interpret the life stories of six of the 100+ veterans buried in Fairview Cemetery, including Civil War veteran and pioneer William Imes.  Our goals are simple: generate interest in local history, and raise funds to preserve and protect this cemetery that is a cherished part of Fountain’s history.

This historic tour program is now four years old and is based on a class taught by Barbara Headle entitled “The Last Great Necessity: Cemeteries, Memory and American History.”  The course was designed to demonstrate the importance of cemeteries to historical study: cemeteries are not only valuable resources to be studied, but as part of our built environment they are also places to be respected and honored.  In August 2012, one month after the students had spent the day mapping one of the oldest sections of Fairview Cemetery, about a dozen of the cemetery’s most historic headstones, most of which belonged to children, were vandalized.  The incident prompted Headle’s students to connect with community members and City officials to raise funds for repairs.  Since then, these students, some of whom have since graduated, return and are joined by a new batch of volunteers to lead the annual tours of the Fountain Fairview Cemetery, located at 757 South Santa Fe Ave.

The tours run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., each tour is about one hour.   The final tour begins at 2 p.m. Tickets are $10 for adults, $7 for students with identification and free for those under 12 years old. Proceeds from the tour and a concurrent silent auction at the Fountain Public Library fund the ongoing repair and conservation of damaged headstones in the cemetery, public awareness programs, and maintenance of the recently installed video surveillance system.

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