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Boys in the Woods
MRIC 2014/15

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Boys in the Woods

"Boys in the Woods: The CCC and idaho Forests Digital Archive and Research Portal"

Tuesday, December 9, 2014 | 12:30-1:30 p.m. 
Whitewater Room, Idaho Commons

Patricia Hart - Journalism and Mass Media
Devlin Becker - Library
Ivar Nelson


The Civilian Conservation Corps was the first, most far-reaching, longest-lived and best-loved of the New Deal programs in a decade full of big ideas and supersized projects. The CCC remains an outstanding example of how the United States acted in time of national crisis to mitigate the catastrophic effects of economic collapse for ordinary people while producing a legacy of public benefit for all. This presentation, however, reconsiders the CCC in fresh perspective and places Idaho—specifically the CCC in Idaho forests—at the very heart of contemporary issues regarding conservation, fire ecology and resource management. Essential to the research of this project is the digitizing of thousands of photographs and documents by the University of Idaho Library Digital Initiatives, and the process of making those available to the public and scholars.

Patricia Hart is a social and cultural historian with a focus on change in times of national crisis and the role of media in that process. Her most recent book, A Home for Every Child (University of Washington Press), addresses the 19th century origins and practice of non-relative adoption in the United States. Previous books include the edited Women Writing Women (University of Nebraska Press) and, with Ivar Nelson, Mining Town: The Photographic Collection of T.N. Barnard and Nellie Stockbridge (University of Washington Press).

Ivar Nelson was born on the Mississippi River in Keokuk, Iowa; grew up in St. Louis; studied at Harvard and Uppsala University (Sweden); volunteered for the Peace Corps in Kenya and worked for the State Department. He founded BookPeople of Moscow and is delighted that it continues after 40 years under its present new ownership. A book publisher, he directed the University of Idaho Press and Eastern Washington University Press. With Patricia Hart he is the author of Mining Town. He volunteers his time when not working on the CCC project working with the Kenworthy Performing Arts Centre, Palouse Pathways and the Latah County Library Board.

Devin Becker was born and raised in Fort Wayne, Ind.. He works as the digital initiatives librarian at the University of Idaho Library, maintaining and designing the library’s digital collections and website. His work has been published in American Archivist, Cutbank, Faultline, Microform and Digitization Review, Prairie Schooner, and other journals. His first book of poetry, Shame | Shame, was selected as the winner of the 2014 A. Poulin Jr. Poetry Prize and will be published by BOA Editions, Ltd. in April 2015.

This is the last Renfrew Colloquium of the fall semester. Please join us Tuesday, Jan. 20, 2015, for “Dancing Hands, Drumming Feet, and Soaring Spirits,” presented by Barry Bilderback and Samantha Ramsay.
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