Centering Pedagogy in History Teaching and Learning: A conversation with Dr. Natalie Mendoza

 Erstwhile contributing editor Caroline Grego interviews Dr. Natalie Mendoza, a postdoctoral research associate and founder of the History Teaching and Learning Project at the University of Colorado Boulder’s history department. The transcript below has been lightly edited, and the interview’s audio is available in the embedded Soundcloud file.   Caroline Grego (CG): Hello and welcome…

Moving away from monuments: Doing southern history well at two South Carolina house museums

In the fourth installment of “The Monuments Among Us” series (see Sara Porterfield’s post on Bears Ears here, Travis May’s discussion of British memorials here and Alessandra Link’s reflection on Louisville’s city parks here), Erstwhile contributing editor Caroline Grego considers how two house museums in her hometown of Columbia, South Carolina, could provide a counterpoint to Confederate statuary. The featured image…

How to run a graduate student conference: RMIHC co-chairs provide a guide

This week, contributing editors Caroline Grego and Graeme Pente share their tips for organizing a graduate student conference. Both have served as co-chairs of the CU Boulder History Department’s Rocky Mountain Interdisciplinary History Conference (RMIHC), which is in its eighteenth year and attracts graduate students from across the country. Graeme was a co-chair in 2015…

Hurricanes, historians, and environmental injustice: De-naturalizing “natural” disaster

Contributing editor Caroline Grego, whose dissertation is about the Great Sea Island Storm of 1893, reflects on historians’ and historically-minded thinkers’ scholarship on “natural disasters.” Header photograph by Marcus Yam for Getty Images. What we call “natural” disasters—hurricanes, earthquakes, mudslides, tornadoes—are not natural at all. This is true, first, because nothing about the experience of…

An appeal for grace: The white historian’s responsibility to radical empathy and refuting the “invented past”

On February 14th, 2017, Representative Joseph “Joe” Neal (D) from Richland County, South Carolina, died unexpectedly at age sixty-six. Rep. Neal served as a pastor, an advocate for environmental justice, and a civil rights activist. He descended from enslaved African Americans in lower Richland County, a rural and predominantly Black community south of Columbia, the…

Reasserting White Supremacy: South Carolina’s Ben Tillman and the 2016 presidential election

On July 10th, 2015, members of a South Carolina Highway Patrol honor guard reeled down the Confederate flag from a pole in front of the statehouse. Ten thousand onlookers roared excitedly as the flag descended, some cheering “USA! USA! USA!” – a traditionally patriotic shout that took on new meaning when chanted at the flag representing the Confederate…

Indigenous History with Erstwhile

This Thanksgiving, look back on some of the pieces on Native America that Erstwhile has published over the years.  The list starts with the oldest posts first. Update: for 2017, I have added in four pieces that we published over the course of the past year! Erstwhile sat down with Pulitzer Prize-winning author and CU Boulder professor…

Happy Halloween from Erstwhile!

Welcome to the Halloween edition of the monthly links round up! Curated by Erstwhile editor Caroline Grego, these links are bound by theme: Halloween. Why Sasquatch and other crypto-beasts haunt our imaginations by Ed Simon From Florida to Indonesia to the Himalayas to Cascadia, humans persist in seeing that which is not there: the Sasquatch.…

Remembering the Great Sea Island Storm of 1893: Mermaids, culpability, and the postbellum Lowcountry

Erstwhile editor Caroline Grego reflects on her dissertation research from the summer and explores the ways in which African Americans in the South Carolina and Georgia sea islands – the Lowcountry – understood the Great Sea Island Storm of 1893, a hurricane that killed thousands of African Americans.  Meteorologists later estimated that the storm was…