Reconciling & Reuniting the Nation: How Americans Have Remembered the Civil War

Caroline Janney

Professor of History, Purdue University

Wednesday, September 30 @ 7.30 pm, Harry T. Wilks Conference Center

Caroline Janney

Caroline Janney

The process of reuniting and reconciling the nation after the Civil War was a tenuous one. How did the Civil War generation understand the war? What were veterans thinking in those famous photographs of men shaking hands across the rock wall at Gettysburg? What had the war meant to women, and to United States Colored Troops? How did its meanings change in the 20th century? The President of the Society of Civil War Historians explores historical memory.

  • Free public event
  • Reception to follow

Witnessing the War on Terror in American Culture

John E. Bodnar

Distinguished Professor of History, Indiana University

Wednesday, September 9 @ 7.30 pm, Harry T. Wilks Conference Center

John E. Bodnar

John E. Bodnar

Encounters with mass violence produce horrible ruptures in people’s lives and extraordinary efforts to heal them. The trauma and pain caused by the 9/11 attacks and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq is revealed in countless memoirs. It highlights tensions between witnesses who insist that tragic losses not be forgotten and massive political projects to erase personal suffering through patriotic narratives and memorials.

  • Free public event
  • Reception to follow

Announcing our Fall 2015/ Spring 2016 Programs

Dear folks:

The Colligan partners with the Fitton Center for our forthcoming series, Staging the Past

The Colligan partners with the Fitton Center for our forthcoming series, Staging the Past

As summer draws to a close, the Michael J. Colligan History Project is gearing up for another year, presenting two quite different but hugely exciting series of events. Our first series, American Wars & American Life, explores the historical legacies of America’s conflicts, past and present. In addition, the Colligan Project is excited to be partnering with the Mad Anthony Theatre Company at the Fitton Center for Creative Arts to sponsor a series of three plays, each touching on different aspects of American history. In advance of these performances, the Colligan series Staging the Past comprises three original public events, exploring the history that inspired them.

Click below for schedule poster and text description of our forthcoming programs:

Fall 2015-Spring 2016 poster

American Wars & American Life

Staging the Past

We look forward to seeing you soon!

Be an Ohio First Lady for the Night!

Caroline_Harrison_cph.3b20942-275x300Be An Ohio First Lady for the Night: Oxford Community Arts Center is raising funds for a lifesize bronze sculpture of First Lady Caroline Scott Harrison (1832-1892), Oxford native and wife of President Benjamin Harrison. Raffle tickets can be obtained via OCAC or at: First prize is a six course dinner for eight at the Ohio Statehouse (December 19, 2015), featuring a historic menu of dishes served by Ohio’s first ladies!

Chautauqua coming to town!


Teddy Roosevelt, among the host of characters bringing living history to Hamilton for the 2016 Ohio Chautauqua

Some good news: Hamilton has been selected as one of four cities to host next year’s Ohio Chautauqua! Fran Tiburzio of the Ohio Humanities Council describes this week-long event as “a traveling living history program,” featuring “fun hands-on workshops for kids and adult programs like lectures in different venues throughout the community.” Evening programs will be hosted on the Miami Hamilton campus, with additional events on other sites. Final dates have yet to be confirmed, but for more details and history of the Chautauqua movement, see Richard O Jones’ excellent coverage:

Teddy Roosevelt to Visit Hamilton

A Noon Stroll Down the Lane

Jim meets the audience following last night's talk

Jim meets the audience following last night’s talk

Last night we concluded our spring season Public Enemies: Hamilton’s Little Chicago Era & Its Consequences. It was great to see so many faces, new and old, crowding the Parrish Auditorium for Jim Blount’s spellbinding exploration of Hamilton in the age of rum runners and speakeasies. The Colligan History Project returns in September with another exciting season of events (about which, watch this space!) but meanwhile history enthusiasts need not despair.

Over summer we’ll keep you posted of historical goings-on in Butler County via our website and Facebook. One such event comes to our attention via the excellent HEY! Hamilton! website (well worth a look if you’re not yet familiar). Former city mayor and local history enthusiast Tom Nye will be leading free guided tour of Hamilton’s Dayton Lane Historic District, meeting Friday May 15 at noon (see link below):