Historians Take Over Grand Rapids, Michigan!

By Kasandra Fager, BGSU History MA student, edited by Chloe S. Kozal

BGSU History Graduate Students pose outside the Grand Rapids Public History Museum in Grand Rapids, MI. Photo by: Kate Brekke.

Imagine the best museum you have visited, whether that was a Presidential Museum, a battlefield, or an art museum. Did it have interactive exhibits, a planetarium, an easy-to-read narrative, or a family-friendly atmosphere? Well, if nothing comes to mind, consider Grand Rapids, Michigan as your next destination!

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“1972: From the End of the Vietnam War to the Beginning of Watergate”, Dr. Benjamin Greene’s presentation featured in Wapakoneta Daily News

As we reflect on 50 years since 1972, we contemplate how past events and historical figures impact our present history. Students of Dr. Greene will learn more about this influential period in the HIST 3334/3334H: The Vietnam War course in Fall 2022.

Read the article here

Student Podcasts from Dr. Challú’s Modern Mexico Course

Podcast links will be updated frequently!

Chloe S. Kozal : Mexican Civilian Protest Art during the 1960s-1980s

Chloe S. Kozal has been passionate about researching how civilians express their political views through art during tumultuous periods of history in Latin America. A continuation of her research and her article (Communication from Far: The Role of Subversive Mail Art During the Argentine Dirty War (1976-1983), this podcast investigates how Mexican artists and mail artists brought change and protest during the Mexican Dirty War.

Nicholas Hartzell- NPR Mexican Debt Crisis Talk

A podcast on the Mexican Debt Crisis in 1982. Listen on Spotify!

Connor Przysiecki- NAFTA, the Economy, and Mexico’s Public Heath Crisis

In Connor’s own words: ” This is my final project for a course I’m taking (Spring 2022) at Bowling Green State University, Modern Mexico. I’ve never done a project in this format. I’m open to civil conversations in the comments, if you’d like more context on a particular subject within this area of study. Enjoy!”

Reminiscences of Don Rowney, by his colleague Doug Forsyth

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As a remembrance of our colleague Professor Emeritus Don Rowney, who recently passed away, we share below Dr. Doug Forsyth’s eulogy with minor edits for brevity. We thank Dr. Forsyth for sharing the text.

Text Box: Don Rowney, sitting in the far right of the picture
Don Rowney on the lower right-hand side.

As early as my on-campus job interview at Bowling Green, in spring 1996, it became clear to me that Don Rowney was the faculty member at the university who was most interested in having me as a colleague.  My wife, Mercedes, and I drove out to northwest Ohio in early summer of 1996, as I looked for a place to live.  Don and Susan invited us over for dinner, and I paid my first visit to the Old West End Historical District in Toledo, where Don and Susan were living, where Susan is still living, and where I would go on to live for twenty-four years and counting.  I still remember vividly that dinner, on the porch behind Don and Susan’s house, and in particular one detail.  Don asked Mercedes, who was and is a professor at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, why she had accompanied me on the long drive out to the Midwest as I looked for a place to live.  ‘Do you think I’m going to leave my husband back here, without making sure it’s a decent place?’ she quipped.  Don looked at her with this peculiar expression of delight he sometimes had, when someone said something unexpected, and in his view particularly amusing—it was the first, but not the last time I saw that expression on his face.  And that sealed it—he and Mercedes became friends for life. Mercedes and I made life-long friends in the Old West End, and in many cases they were already friends of Don and Susan.  I think I owe not just the continuation of my career to Don, but also a good deal of the happiness I’ve derived from living in this part of the world, over the past quarter century.

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Native Americans and Europeans in the Land of the Black Swamp

This is a paper that was written by Kasandra Fager, a graduate student in the 2021-22 cohort and recipient of The Donna M. Nieman Award for Undergraduate Research Excellence in History. Fager recently published an article featuring some of the research in this paper in the NW Ohio History Journal.

When you look around a city, what do you see? I am sure that you see buildings, factories, streets, and homes like any other city or town in America. You would also probably see parents rushing to and from work, grandparents running to the grocery store, and children playing ball in the streets. These things are normal and have been considered as such for centuries, but have you ever stopped to consider how we got here and who or what came before us? In history class, we learned how the wilderness and the Native Americans lived on this land before the Europeans came and the rest is, as we say, history. Today, I want to stop for a moment and consider how the land in Bowling Green, Ohio was affected by the battle between Native Americans and Europeans to live on and commercialize the land to better understand our nation’s environmental and economic history.

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Dr. Nwauwa gives lecture entitled “Igbo Scholars and the Making of the New African Intellectual Tradition: Prof K. O. Dike in Perspective”

Dr. Nwauwa

Dr. Apollos Nwauwa, Professor of History & Africana Studies at Bowling Green State University, gave a lecture with the Igbo Studies Association on Saturday, January 2. Read more about and view the lecture below:

The post-World War II period in Africa was accompanied by a new intellectual revolution in which a distinguished scholar of Igbo extraction, Professor Kenneth Onwuka Dike, was in the vanguard. The emergent transformation was most evident in African studies, especially in the realm of African historical consciousness, African historical thought, and African historical methodologies. This study explores not only the pioneering role of Professor Dike in inaugurating this new intellectual revolution but also in expanding the corollary frontiers that crystallized and augmented several African political and intellectual concepts of his time. Dike’s efforts stimulated a new intellectual consciousness that rescued African studies and African history from the colonialist, racist and patronizing tradition of his time.

Research Trip to the Stephen Foster Memorial Museum, Pittsburgh, PA Joshua Dubbert, M.A. History Candidate (’22)

This is part of an ongoing series of posts about the work of students in BGSU in public history. Joshua Dubbert is a graduate student in the M.A. in history. He studies 19th-century America, Victorian Culture, and the composer Stephen Foster. To learn more about our history programs, visit bgsu.edu/history.

Portrait of Stephen Foster, Center for American Music Library, Stephen Foster Memorial, University of Pittsburgh.

I recently visited the Stephen Foster Memorial Museum in Pittsburgh, PA to do research for my Public History Capstone project, entitled Stephen Foster, at Home in the 19th Century. The project deals with 19th-century composer Stephen Collins Foster, author of some of the most famous songs in American history including “Oh! Susanna,” and “Camptown Races.” It will be available through an Omeka site that will be linked permanently on the University of Pittsburgh’s Center for American Music website. The central contribution of the project will be a synthesis of the conceptual and physical aspects of home relating to Foster, anchored in the early to mid-Victorian era. It will be the first study to examine Foster solely in relation to the Victorian idea of “home.”

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BGSU History MA Explores Digital Storytelling and Spatial History

Rob Carlock earned an MA in History and a Graduate Certificate in Public History from BGSU in May 2019.  This fall, he will enter his second year in the PhD Program in History at George Mason University.


Bowling Green State University was my home for 6 years as I worked my way through my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in history. I then left Ohio to pursue a PhD in history at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, sadly leaving behind a support network and family I had built during my time there. It has certainly been a challenge, especially since my first year has been synchronous online learning due to COVID-19. Although I have yet to meet my peers and faculty in-person, I was able to connect with many of them and begin to forge new relationships. With my peers, my connection is definitely a sense of unity that we are tackling such a daunting task together; with the faculty, my connection is a sense of confidence and support as they encourage me to continue identifying and expanding on my interests. 

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