Skip to content

We’re hiring!

The Department of History is recruiting a full-time instructor in the field of Ancient History. Please check for the full description. (If the link doesn’t work, please check go to, then search the History Department posting.) It’s a great time to join us: excellence in undergraduate and graduate education, professional development, curriculum innovation, and great colleagues and students. The deadline to apply for the position is June 21.

New Course: Slave Resistance, Fugitivity and the Underground Railroad

The Department of History is pleased to announce that Dr. Jackson will be offering a new course in the fall: HIST 3910, “Slave Resistance, Fugitivity and the Underground Railroad.”

The Underground Railroad MapThe course counts as an elective in the History major and minor, it is cross-listed with Ethnic Studies 3000, and fulfills the upper-division requirement of the Multidisciplinary Core of the College of Arts and Sciences. It will meet on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays 11:30-12:20.

From Dr. Jackson:

There are only a few well known instances of slave rebellion in the United States, and only one successful revolution in the Americas, a fact that slave owners often used to assert that enslaved people were happy with their bondage. But as Harriet Tubman allegedly said, “There were two things I had a right to, liberty or death; if I could not have one, I would have the other.” Enslaved people constantly resisted the dehumanization of their enslavement in any way they could, even if it cost them their lives. This course looks at the history of slavery through the eyes of people who refused to let the institution of slavery rob them of the large and small freedoms all humans crave. We will consider slave narratives, rebellions and representations of slave resistance in popular culture (films, novels, television). The course will also investigate the important role that Ohio, especially northwest Ohio, and Michigan, in particular Detroit, played in the history of the Underground Railroad and free Black communities. 


Recognizing Excellence in Our History Students

We held our annual Celebration of Excellence in History today. This was a collaborative effort of faculty, staff, Phi Alpha Theta and alums to recognize undergraduate and graduate student achievement with awards and scholarships.





Established in 1993 in honor of Dr. Lawrence J. Friedman, Distinguished University Professor Emeritus of the Department of History. This award is given for outstanding graduate student research.  The dissertation/thesis must be nominated in writing by the student’s mentor.

Presented by Dr. Ruth W. Herndon to Michael Horton



Awarded to a graduate student that submits the best paper from a History class during the 2017 year (Spring, Summer, and Fall 2017 semesters).

                                    Presented by Dr. Michael E. Brooks to Chris Lause

                                    Honorable Mention: Rebekah Brown 



This award is presented to the graduate student recognized as the outstanding teaching assistant in the BGSU Department of History.

Presented by Dr. Kara E. Barr to Kaysie Harrington



Kyle Penzinski receives special recognition from peers in Phi Alpha Theta

This award is presented to a graduate student for meritorious contributions to the BGSU Department of History.

                                    Presented by Dr. Rebecca J. Mancuso to Kyle Penzinski





Presented to an undergraduate student who submits an excellent history research paper based on primary sources. Recipient agrees to present their work in a public forum sponsored by the Department of History.

Presented by Dr. Luke A. Nichter to Austin Kepling: “Thunderclap from a Cloudless Sky: German-Americans in Northwest Ohio during the Great War” Written for Dr. Benjamin Greene’s HIST 4800: 20th Century America (Fall 2017)



 Created in 2001 by Jo Enger Arthur’s son, Mike Arthur, BGSU class of 1974, in honor of his mother’s interest in history and overseas travel.  Jo Arthur studied history at BGSU, where she later met her husband E. Printy Arthur, BGSU class of 1950. This scholarship offers support for study abroad for majors or minors in history, integrated social studies, international studies, or European language.  Applicants will normally have completed at least 12 hours of history courses and have a GPA in history of 3.2 or higher.

Presented by Dr. Kara E. Barr to Emily Ambrose


Established in 2001 in honor of Dr. Stuart R. Givens, former Chair and Professor Emeritus of the History Department, and University historian, and his wife Florence P. Givens.  Dr. Given’s forty-five year career was dedicated primarily to his two loves – teaching and service to the University and to the Bowling Green community. This award is presented to a rising senior majoring in history or integrated social studies with a minimum GPA of 3.2.  The student must have a strong record of service to the department, University, or community.

Presented by Dr. Rebecca J. Mancuso to Cooper Clark


Established in 1989 in memory of Dr. Grover Platt, former Chair and Professor Emeritus of the Department of History by his wife Dr. Virginia Platt.  The scholarship was later changed by the couple’s daughter, Carolyn V. Platt, to honor both parents.  Dr. Virginia Platt was a former trustee of the University and served on the History Department faculty. Awarded to an undergraduate student majoring in history.  Preference given to students who are the first generation of their family to attend a college or university, and recognizes academic achievement.

Presented by Dr. Nicole M. Jackson to Rebecca Good and Annebell Meddock



Established in honor of John Schwarz, former Chair of the Department of History.  This scholarship is awarded to a history major for the best essay completed for a history requirement.

Presented by Dr. Luke A. Nichter to Ernest Valladares III “Disaster in Africa: An Examination of the Combat Development of the United States Army at Kasserine Pass,” written for Dr. Benjamin Greene’s HIST 4800: 20th Century America (Fall 2017)


Dr. Nwauwa presents Fulwyler award to Good and Money


Established for the purpose of providing scholarships to History students and to honor the memory of Dr. Virginia Platt.  General Fulwyler received the BGSU Distinguished Alumni Award in 1984.  Dr. Virginia Platt was a former trustee of the University and served on the History Department faculty. 

Presented by Dr. Apollos Okwuchi Nwauwa to Rebecca Good and Jacob Money



Established by Mary Ellen Keil, a graduate of BGSU.  Keil was a school teacher and later served as a Captain in the USAFR during WWII.  This scholarship is granted to a student who has declared an interest in pursuing studies in history. Preference is given to females, native Ohioans, and for scholastic achievement.  All eligible candidates are automatically referred to the department by the enrolling office. There is no application for the scholarship.

Presented by Dr. Amílcar E. Challú to Renee Altaffer; Debi Kaur; Moira Armstrong; Annabelle Meddock; Kelly Beavers; Anne Mier; Aislinn Bill; Sarah Miller; Chloe Bortz; Megan Miner; Rebecca Good; Kaitlin Osborne; Alannah Graves; Kinzey Schreiber; Haley Hoffman; Olivia Vandevender; Taylor Holtman; Brooke Weirick; Victoria Kahrs; Mary Wires; Alexis Karolin.


Presented to a senior history major for service to the Department and fellow majors combined with demonstrated academic excellence.

Presented by Dr. Rebecca J. Mancuso to Jake Householder



Special recognition for an exemplary role in leading the History Society, assistance with the Undergraduate Curriculum Committee, social media, Preview and Presidents’ Day or other History Department activities and events. 

Presented by Dr. Nicole M. Jackson to Dominique Seo


Dr. Grunden’s guest lecture at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing


On Tuesday, April 3, 2018, BGSU History Department Professor Walter Grunden visited the prestigious Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing to present an invited guest lecture at the Institute for the History of Natural Sciences. The lecture, entitled, “The Left Behind: Travel Restrictions, Science Policy, and the Cold War in Occupied Japan,” examined how United States occupation officials used visas for international travel from 1945 to 1952 as both a carrot and stick to influence the political behavior of Japanese scientists, which ultimately resulted in the isolation of a select group who were deemed to have been communists, socialists, or “fellow travelers.” Grunden’s host, Professor Zaiqing Fang, noted that this is an aspect of postwar Japanese history about which Chinese academics know too little. The essay upon which the lecture was based has been accepted for publication in the Journal of American-East Asian Relations.

Grunden’s visit to Beijing marks the halfway point in a six-month long journey in Asia, which so far has taken him to South Korea, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, and several destinations in China. “I am trying to get the most out of my spring sabbatical not only by conducting research for my primary project, but also by visiting important historical sites, such as the Great Wall, and pursuing side interests, such as experiencing national history museums, as well as exploring numerous temples to examine up close the many forms of Buddhist iconography that can be found throughout East and Southeast Asia. I’m really looking forward to sharing these experiences with my students when I return to Bowling Green,” Grunden said. Grunden also remarked that the trip has had some particularly memorable moments. “One day last week as we exited a museum, we found that all the traffic in our part of the city had come to a complete stop. There was an incredible security presence with both police and uniformed military officers lining the streets. Suddenly, on the overpass ahead, there arrived a number of police and military vehicles followed by series of luxury sedans speeding by. Only the next day did we learn that we had encountered Kim Jong-Un’s motorcade on its way to downtown Beijing.”

The next stop for Grunden will be Japan, where he will continue his research on science policy during the years of the US

occupation. Grunden has been awarded a grant from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science to collaborate on this project with Professor Kenji Ito at the Graduate University for Advanced Studies (SOKENDAI) in Hayama, Japan.


Photo 1: Grunden (center) and Professor Zaiqing Fang (left) pose for a photo with faculty and graduate students of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the University of the Chinese Academy of Science’s College of Humanities & Social Sciences

Photo 2: Promotional poster for Grunden’s lecture, “The Left Behind”

Photo 3: Grunden and his wife, Han Li, on the Great Wall at Juyongguan north of Beijing

BGSU Alumni Present at AHA conference


Falcons Take Flight: Alumni Participate in American Historical Association’s 2018 Annual Meeting


The BGSU History Department received some excellent recognition at a scholarly conference at the beginning of the year when alumni presented research at the highest profile gathering of historians in the country.

On January 5, Michael Kneisel (M.A., 2014), Lindsey Bauman (M.A., 2017) and Michael Horton (M.A., 2017) presented “Teaching the Master Narrative,” at the American Historical Association’s 132nd annual meeting in Washington, D.C.  The session focused on the accepted narratives of different historical figures and events within 20th century U.S. history textbooks.

Mike Horton’s paper, “Texas Discovers Columbus: The Columbian Legacy in Texas Textbooks, 1919-2017,” examined how textbooks portray the arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1492.  Mike Kneisel’s paper, “Constructing an American Mythology: The Boston Tea Party in High School Textbooks,” looked at how textbooks present the 1773 Boston Tea Party.  And Lindsey Bauman’s paper, “Suffering in Silence: The Voice and Representation of Slaves in 1950s American History Textbooks,” examined how textbooks describe slavery in the antebellum South.

“The preparation process for our session was fairly meticulous, but it provided its own valuable networking opportunities,” said Lindsey Bauman. “Following all of the groundwork, actually presenting at the conference was its own kind of reward. The event presented us with a platform to reach a diverse group of professionals.”

The lively presentation was attended by an audience of 70-80 that included college professors, high school teachers, textbook writers, public historians, and journalists. Afterward, a New York Times reporter interviewed Lindsey Bauman for a story about Confederate monuments.

The session was organized by Dr. Ruth Herndon and chaired by Dr. James Buss, Dean of the Honors College at Salisbury State University (Maryland) and another BGSU alumnus (M.A., 2002).  Dr. Kyle Ward, Social Studies Director at Minnesota State University, Mankato, who has written about high school history textbooks, became an honorary falcon for the weekend and joined the session as its commentator.

The study of textbooks is a vibrant field of historical study.  Textbooks evolve with society; textbook versions of history often conflict with each other as new generations interpret the past through different lenses.  Audience discussion and twitter posts about the session reflected this controversy over how historical knowledge is produced and then reproduced in textbooks.  Dr. Buss identified the session’s central question for historians: “How can (and should) we ask our students to undertake the difficult task of thinking like an historian?” The three papers, he said, “proffer suggestions for how we might think about teaching the past as we move into the future.”

The three papers showed how textbook history tends to legitimate the perspective of those with the most cultural and political power at the time of publication. “The presenters’ papers made me very happy because they went beyond the obvious,” said Dr. Ward.  “What I’ve found is that stories change, stories disappear, or stories remain intact. The accepted role of history education is to help create better citizens, and these stories reflect what kind of citizens students are expected to become.”


Mike Horton spoke for all three presenters when he pointed to “the conversations” generated by the session.  These conversations provided valuable feedback about new sources and research techniques; they also introduced the presenters to potential collaborators in future projects.

Mike Kneisel is currently in the History Ph.D. program at Kent State University; Mike Horton is in the Master’s Program in Underwater Archaeology at the University of Miami (Florida); Lindsey Bauman worked most recently as archivist and historical researcher at Whirlpool Corporation in Clyde, Ohio.


# # #

Pictured: Ward, Bauman, Kneisel, Horton, Buss



BGSU History students, faculty, and alumni formed a lively presence at the Ohio Academy of History’s recent conference at the University of Dayton on March 23-24, 2018.  Their participation showed that History Falcons foster a valuable network within the state and help maintain the profession of teaching, researching, and writing History.

The panel from OAH, all BGSU alumni. From left to right: Dr. Kevin Kern, Mr. Chris Blubaugh, and Dr. Dustin McLochlin. Also known as the all-beard panel!

Rebekah A. S. Brown, a first-year History M.A. student at BGSU, presented her paper, “The Ohio Company, Medical Practice, and Westward Expansion, 1786-1794,” in a session on “Medicine, Society and Images of America in late 18th and early 19th Centuries.”  It is noteworthy that her work was accepted for presentation while she is still in her first year of our graduate program.

Don C. Eberle (BGSU Ph.D., 2013) presented his paper, “‘Our Airmen Were Hoping to Raid Cologne Every Night Week After Next’: Harry ‘Bud’ Fisher, an American Censor in the British Army during the First World War,” in a session on “The American Experience in the First World War.”  Dr. Eberle now teaches at Northwest State Community College in Archbold.

Chris Blubaugh (BGSU M.A., 2013) and Dustin McLochlin (BGSU Ph.D., 2014) presented papers in a panel on “19th Century Presidents: New Perspectives.”  Mr. Blubaugh, now teaching at Ohio Dominican University, presented a paper on “Protecting Lincoln: Abraham Lincoln’s Journey to the Nation’s Capital.”  Dr. McLochlin, now Curator at the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Library and Museums, presented a paper on “Complicated Narratives: Rutherford B. Hayes.”  Chair and commentator Dr. Kevin Kern (BGSU Ph.D., 1997) moderated a lively discussion among those who attended the session.  Dr. Kern is Associate Professor at the University of Akron, author of Ohio: A History of the Buckeye State (2013), co-founder and editor of the Northeast Ohio Journal of History, and Secretary-Treasurer of the Ohio Academy of History.

Dr. Herndon (left) presenting Dr. Jackson (right) the Junior Faculty Research Grant Award for her book project.

During the conference award ceremony, Dr. Ruth Herndon, Professor of History at BGSU and chair of the Ohio Academy’s Junior Faculty Research Grant Award Committee, presented the dual award to BGSU faculty colleague Dr. Nicole Jackson and to Dr. Tom Weyant, who teaches at the University of Akron.  Dr. Jackson’s award-winning book project is “Colonization in Reverse: Black British Family Activism in ‘Post’-Imperial England,” a study of Black British immigrants from the British Caribbean to London and other locales from the 1960s to the 1980s.

Also during the conference award ceremony, Dr. Dwayne Beggs (BGSU Ph.D, 2010) presented the Academy’s Teaching Award to Dr. Mitchell Lerner, Professor of History at Ohio State University.  This was most appropriate, as Dr. Beggs, now Assistant Professor at Lourdes University, himself won the outstanding graduate teaching award from the History Department in 2010.

BGSU History students, faculty, and alumni thoroughly enjoyed seeing each other at the Ohio Academy’s conference.  They renewed professional ties, exchanged news about their teaching and scholarship, and encouraged each other in their shared work of practicing history around the state.





Meet Our New Senior Secretary!!

Get to know our new Senior Secretary, Nicki Lee Reimer, with this brief introduction of her via interview questions!

Q. How long have you been at BGSU? What brought you here?
I have been at BGSU since June 2014 when I took a part-time position as a secretary at the Speech and Hearing Clinic. The part-time hours fit well with my family’s busy schedule back then. More recently, I worked at the Falcon Team Store in the Stroh Center, but still on a part-time basis. My kids are both in high school now, so I was ready to make the move to full-time when this position became available.

Q. What do you do in your free time? What are some of your hobbies/interests?
I *love* attending my kids’ sporting events. I’ve spent many an hour watching football, wrestling, and gymnastics – and I can’t think of any better way to spend my free time! I am also a part-time fitness instructor, so a lot of my remaining free time is consumed with designing and practicing fitness classes. Currently, I teach barre, cycle, and kickboxing classes. I also run sometimes, and recently I developed an infatuation with kayaking. I adore anything that takes me outside in the sunshine, bonus if it has to do with water and/or the woods.

Q. Are you a history nerd? Do you like history?
History… a little… nerd… definitely. If quoting old movies counts as being a history nerd, then I nailed it. The cheesier the movie, the better!! But in all seriousness, I do enjoy history quite a lot. No particular time period or events per se, my interests run the gamut. That’s part of why I was excited to be offered this position with the department. I have a general fascination with the past; I think we can learn a great deal from it.

Q. Who is your favorite President? Why?
If I had to pick (which she had to, because that is the point of the interview), I suppose Abraham Lincoln or Theodore Roosevelt. Lincoln because of the personal tragedies that he had to endure and overcome during his presidency. While dealing with a nation trying to tear itself apart, he dealt with losing more family members than any one person should. And yet, he persevered. That says a lot about his strength of character. Roosevelt is a candidate for multiple reasons, but mostly because I believe in the preservation of land and am grateful for his dedication to the national parks. Among the great contributions he made to our country, the national park system is an amazing national treasure (see above comments regarding sunshine, water and/or the woods).
Q. Do you collect anything?
I’m always walking into things – do bruises count?

Q. What times can students expect to see you in your office?
For the most part, they can find me in the office between 8am and 5pm M-F.

“Patriots, Loyalists, and Revolution” Activity in Revolutionary America

This entry, written by BGSU student Nicole Schwaben, is about a “Reacting to the Past” game led by Dr. Andrew Schocket in HIST 4220, America in the Revolutionary Era, Spring 2018. If interested, secure your spot in this Fall 2018’s reacting to the past (HIST 3910) course!


In the game, Patriots, Loyalists, and Revolution, which our class played in HIST 4220, all students are assigned a role, whether it be in the Crowd/Gallery or within the Provincial Congress. I was assigned the character of John Cuyler, Jr., a member of the Moderate faction within the Provincial Congress. Additionally, there were also Loyalist and Patriot factions in the Provincial Congress. Along with the other Moderates, I had a unique position in which I could sway the direction of the game. Both the Loyalists and the Patriots needed the votes of the Moderates in order to reach their objectives.

As Moderates, we tried our best to provide a fair and level-headed perspective of the issues at hand. However, this

Game in development 

proved to be difficult at times. Many of the Moderates, myself included, were in debt; therefore, a member of the Loyalist faction somewhat controlled us. This was frustrating for the Moderate faction because we also desired to maintain autonomy. Without autonomy, we would not be able to make our own thoughtful decisions. Instead, we would be forced to put our personal beliefs aside and act as our creditors wanted, or face the consequences.

In my role, I was also the publisher of a newspaper that was distributed twice throughout the game. This gave me control of the media, including the ability to report on other events, cover what speeches and debates happened during the game sessions, and leave my own commentary on what actions I believed the Provincial Congress should take. The other factions seemed to notice the power that the newspaper held, and both sides attempted to use that to their advantage. At the beginning, the Loyalist faction nominated me to be speaker. I assumed I was nominated so that the member of the Loyalist faction, Frederick Phillipse, whom I was indebted to, could control my actions. Luckily, I was not chosen to be speaker. On the Patriot side, Judge Livingston also tried to gain control of the newspaper. Livingston offered to pay off my debts, as long as chose to vote in favor of the Committee of Inspection and write my newspaper in a way that benefited the Patriots. I refused to agree to these conditions, largely because I desired my newspaper to be relatively unbiased.

Unfortunately, there were consequences for not agreeing to the terms set by the Patriot faction. Because I refused, the Patriot faction mobbed me. The mob was an incredibly stressful situation in which I was not provided much time to make a decision, but had several options. I could attempt to form a counter mob; however, there was not enough people to accomplish that. I could shoot into the mob; however, that seemed risky and I did not want to promote violence. I could submit to the Patriot’s wishes, but then I would lose my autonomy. I could resist the mob, but then I would have been tarred and feathered and my newspaper would have been destroyed. I decided to flee to a British ship and miss the rest of the session, effectively ending the game for me.

Patriots, Loyalists, and Revolution allows students to immerse themselves into history. Students are encouraged to do their research on the American Revolutionary era, which enables them to play their character to the best of their ability and accomplish historically accurate objectives in the game. Through the speeches and debates during the game, students are able to empathize and gain a better understanding of those who actually faced these issues before the breakout of the American Revolutionary War.

BGSU Center for Archival Collections (CAC) Internship Opportunity


The deadline to apply for summer and fall internships in BGSU’S Center for Archival Collections (CAC) has been extended to April 2. See a brief description/excerpt from the CAC, located in Jerome Library, below:

The University Libraries (UL) at Bowling Green State University welcomes undergraduate and graduate students interested in developing academic related internships/co-ops/practicums professional opportunities within the UL. Considered a leader among academic libraries, especially in Ohio, the University Libraries’ strengths include instruction and reference, access and technical services, government documents, and special collections which represent the collecting areas of popular culture, sound recordings, K-12 curriculum materials, regional and Great Lakes history, university archives and rare books. Students may have the opportunity to work closely with professional librarians and archivists, gaining practical professional experience. Students enrolled in graduate programs in library science, archival administration, history, American culture studies, popular culture studies and other related fields are encouraged to apply.


** The History Department strongly encourages all students to apply, with our own History students having benefitted immensely from this opportunity on multiple occasions.


Further information about the program and application process can be found at:

History Professional Day 2018

The History Department at Bowling Green State University is pleased to announce that its annual…..

History Professional Day!

Date: Friday, April 6, 2018.  

Place: BGSU Main Campusm Room 142 of the Jerome Library

Time: 8:15 AM- 1:00 PM

Registration Fee: $20


Description: History Professional Day offers area history and social studies teachers the opportunity to update their knowledge of history subject matter and recent historiographical trends in the profession.  This year’s event will feature presentations on the Catalan Crisis (Dr. Douglas Forsyth), early modern Europe (Dr. Kara Barr), and a workshop on archival sources (Michelle Sweetser, MSI and head of BGSU’s Center for Archival Collections).

Schedule of Events:

Time Event Presenter
8:15-8:45 AM Registration, Coffee
8:45-9:00 AM Welcome
9:00-9:50 AM Workshop on archival sources Michelle Sweetser, MLIS
10:00-10:50 AM Early Modern Europe Kara Barr, Ph.D.
11:00-11:50 AM Catalan Crisis Douglas Forsyth, Ph.D.
12:00 PM-1:00 PM Catered lunch and conversation


Please register online at The registration page has information on parking for the event. For further information, or to let us know about any dietary restriction, please email us at

We hope you can make it!


Skip to toolbar