Students Get Passports Stamped for a Journey into Public History

Friday, March 15, 2013

On Tuesday, several dozen UWG students gathered in the Ingram Library for a journey through history. “Passport to Public History: Come See What Historians Really Do,” allowed students to explore work done by public historians while showcasing a compilation work completed by UWG graduate students. The event, hosted by the Center for Public History, included six student presenters who provided in-depth presentations about their partnerships and research with West Georgia Textile Heritage Trail, New Harmonies, National Park Service and the Trail of Tears, The Regional Music Project and The Southeastern Quilt and Textile Museum.

Students could not resist being intrigued by the intricate details on the quilts from the Southeastern Quilt and Textile Museum. “We have a permanent collection of 52 quilts in storage,” said Board of Directors President Beverly Hammack. “There will be something different to see every time you come to visit our museum.”

“It’s not a huge museum, but it is a really great start,” added Jonathan Dorsey, executive director for the Carrollton Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. “Visitors will get a variety of experiences at one time.”

The Center for Public History promotes understanding and public discussion of regional history and culture, while supporting collaborative research opportunities between faculty and students at the University of West Georgia and community partners. The center offers a variety of services in historical research including exhibit development, oral history projects, folklife documentation, architectural survey, public program development, digital history and archival processing.

“The Passport to Public History program was the best showcase of student research that we have ever had,” said Dusty Dye, assistant director for the Center for Public History. “The turnout was exceptional and many students mentioned that they learned a lot about what public history is, what public historians do and the wide range of careers available to professional historians.

Of course, the project would not have been nearly as successful as it was without our amazing student staff members. By all accounts, their enthusiasm about their projects really conveyed how exciting the field of public history can be.”

To find out more about current activities and online exhibits, visit the Center for Public History.