Monday, December 28, 2009

Closing Out the Year in Hawaii: Reflections from 1845

Reflections On the Close of the Year 1845

The Friend, Honolulu: January, 1846 Edition

Momentous thought! another year

Has winged its rapid flight,

'Tis past with all its sights and scenes

Forever from our sight-

'Tis gone with all its hopes and fears-

Its joys and sorrows-smiles and tears.

Vail mortals! insects of an hour,

How fleeting is your life,

How hard you toil for wealth and power,

All eager for the strife;

Why would ye grasp an empty name

A tyrant's or a miser's fame?

My youth's companions, where are ye?

And thou, the fondly loved-

The world's a dreary waste to me

Since from your midst I roved;

Have ye run out life's latest sands,

Or gone like me to foreign lands?

Alas! for many a saddened heart

Will mourn the year that's gone,

To whom the world can ne'er impart

The joys forever flown;

Nor bring them back, the loved-the lost-

The beautiful-the parent's boast.

Blest is the man whose mental eye,

Looks far beyond the world,

He sees the glories of the sky

Harmoniously unfurled-

Bright vision of eternal youth,

Eternal as the God of truth.

Honolulu, Dec. 31st.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Sailor in College: 1864

The following appears in the November 1864 edition of The Friend, the Honolulu-based publication of Samuel C. Damon of the American Seaman's Friend Society:

The valedictorian at Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT, Jacob W.H. Ames, Newport, N.H., at eighteen years of age, was a sailor before the mast, not acquainted with much more than his letters.

At twenty-four he has graduated at the head of his class, competing with twenty-three good scholars, all of whom, doubtless, have enjoyed the usual educational advantages.

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Supreme Court Historical Society, Washington, D.C.

Many people -including historians and history teachers- are unaware that the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., has its own historical society.

"a private non-profit organization, is dedicated to the collection and preservation of the history of the Supreme Court of the United States. Incorporated in the District of Columbia in 1974, it was founded by Chief Justice Warren E. Burger, who served as its first honorary chairman. The Society's headquarters is located at Opperman House, 224 East Capitol Street, N.E., Washington, D.C. 20003. Opperman House has two important resources: The Goldman Library and the Membership Lounge. The Goldman Library has a conference table suitable for small meetings and luncheons. The books housed therein have been collected through the efforts of Professor James B. O'Hara, a Trustee of the Society, and comprise one of the finest collections of judicial biographies, Justices' writings, and histories of the Court. The collection also includes materials relating to Solicitors and Attorneys General and Presidents of the United States. The Membership Lounge is a meeting space located on the third floor sufficient in size for small receptions and luncheons.

"The Society accomplishes its mission by conducting educational programs, supporting historical research, publishing books, journals, and electronic materials, and by collecting antiques and artifacts related to the Court's history. These activities and others increase the public's awareness of the Court's contributions to our nation's rich constitutional heritage."

The Society's web site connects visitors with various educational resources for use in and outside of the classroom. We particularly call attention to the History of the Court, How the Court Works, Publications, and the Learning Center.

Air Force Historical Foundation Awards

The Air Force Historical Foundation stimulates interest in America’s air power history and heritage by sponsoring awards that honor the making – and documentation – of Air Force history.

The History Education Council of Hawaii refers our news-blog visitors to this link for a listing of awards sponsored by the Foundation. Please save this link to your bookmarks or favorites.

Junior Statesmen of America: 2010 Summer School Courses Announced

The Junior Statesmen of America is proud to announce its summer 2010 program offerings. We continue our long-time partnership with Georgetown, Princeton, and Stanford universities to offer a three-week residential summer school experience. Students enroll in one college level government or speech course that is supplemented by JSA’s signature Congressional Workshop. Summer 2010 course offerings include: AP U.S. Government, AP Macroeconomics, International Relations, War & Diplomacy, Political Communication, Constitutional Law, and Media & Politics.

Additionally, we have several special programs including an extended four-week AP U.S. History program at Princeton, a Freshman Scholars program for rising high school freshmen, and the JSA Diplomat program in Beijing, China! Students in the JSA Diplomat program will earn college credit and take courses in Modern Chinese History & Politics and Beginner’s Chinese. Our summer school programs are the pinnacle of the JSA experience and attract hundreds of student leaders annually. We are committed to getting JSA members to summer school.

To that end, we are offering a JSA member tuition rate of $3,750 (non-member rate: $4,500) to make summer school more affordable for JSA members. Click here to nominate an outstanding student leader for summer school.

Weeklong leadership institutes complete JSA’s summer offerings. They include: The Gene Burd Institute on Media & Politics (UCLA), generously endowed by alumnus Professor Gene Burd; Energy & the Environment (Stanford); Texas Institute on Leadership & Politics (UT Austin); Northeast Institute on National Security (Columbia); and the Arizona Institute on State & Local Government (Arizona State). These programs give student unparalleled access to elected officials and leaders private, public, and non-profit sectors. To learn more about our programs, visit

Foreign Policy Research Institute Education Programs

Founded in 1955, the Philadelphia-based Foreign Policy Research Institute (FPRI) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization devoted to bringing the insights of scholarship to bear on the development of policies that advance U.S. national interests. FPRI adds perspective to events by fitting them into the larger historical and cultural context of international politics.

The History Education Council of Hawaii calls attention to FPRI's education programs and recommends them to Hawaii educators.

The Wachman Center is dedicated to improving international and civic literacy.

The History Institute
In 1996, the Wachman Fund inaugurated a series of weekend History Institutes for secondary school teachers, chaired by Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Walter McDougall and FPRI Senior Fellow David Eisenhower. In addition to papers and audio/video from past conferences, a selection of classroom lessons submitted by participants is available.

The Beveridge Family Teaching Prize (K-12)

Established in 1995, this prize honors the Beveridge family’s longstanding commitment to the AHA and K-12 teaching. Friends and family members endowed this award to recognize excellence and innovation in elementary, middle school, and secondary history teaching, including career contributions and specific initiatives. The prize will be awarded on a two-year cycle rotation: in even-numbered years, to an individual; in odd-numbered years, to a group.

The next prize will be awarded to a group. To be eligible, the group must be composed of a majority of K-12 teachers. The group can be recognized either for excellence in teaching or for an innovative initiative applicable to the entire field. The prize carries a cash award of $1,500 for the group project (plus travel expenses for the group leader) and will be awarded at the annual meeting in January 2011. See past winners of this award.

Each letter of nomination must include the name and address of an individual in the group that can be contacted. After receipt of this nomination letter, this individual will be contacted and asked to submit the following electronically or by mail: vita (no more than 3 pages) of the primary participants, an essay of no more than five pages in length describing the contribution or product, discussing the achievement or innovation in approach and development, and summarizing the historical scholarship utilized. Up to ten pages of appropriate supporting materials can be included (i.e. letters of support and course materials, excerpts from a text book, or other evidence of contribution).

Only the letter of nomination should be mailed (no faxes) to:

Beveridge Family Teaching Prize
American Historical Association
400 A Street, SE, Washington, DC 20003-3889

The deadline for the letter of nomination is March 15, 2010.

William Gilbert Award for the Best Article on Teaching History

The William Gilbert Award for the Best Article on Teaching History recognizes outstanding contributions to the teaching of history through the publication of journal articles. The prize was endowed by a generous gift from Mrs. William Gilbert in memory of her husband, a distinguished member of the history department at the University of Kansas.

Eligible for consideration in a given year are articles by members of the AHA, published in the United States between June 1, 2009 to May 31, 2011. Journals and individual members may submit nominations on the teaching of history (including scholarship of teaching and learning, methodology and theory of pedagogy) for each biennial cycle of this award. Journals, magazines, and other serials can submit up to two articles for each award cycle. Each nominator is required to provide a brief letter of support (no more than two pages) with the article. See past winners of this award.

One copy of each letter of support and article must be sent for each member of the Committee on Teaching Prizes.

Entries must be postmarked by July 15, 2011. Entries will not be returned. No faxes will be accepted.

Send six copies of your completed entry to:

Gilbert Award Coordinator
American Historical Association
400 A St. S.E.
Washington, D.C. 20003

Aerospace History Fellowship: American Historical Association and NASA

The American Historical Association (AHA) annually sponsors at least one Fellow for one academic year to undertake research related to aerospace history.

This fellowship is supported by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). It will provide a Fellow with an opportunity to engage in significant and sustained advanced research in all aspects of the history of aerospace from the earliest human interest in flight to the present, including cultural and intellectual history, economic history, history of law and public policy, and the history of science, engineering, and management.

Here is a link to a list of past fellowship award recipients, the term of their fellowships and research topics.

The History Education Council of Hawaii highly recommends that Hawaii historians and educators with an interest in aerospace history apply.

It should be remembered that Ellison Onizuka, who died in the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster, was from Kealakekua, Kona, Hawaii.

For more information including eligibility, residency requirements, application procedures and stipends click this link to the AHA web page.

Applications and letters of recommendation must be postmarked by March 5, 2010.

Submit to:
Fellowship in Aerospace History
American Historical Association
400 A Street, S.E.
Washington, D.C. 20003

Thursday, December 17, 2009

International Conference: Museums and the Web 2010

Museums and the Web 2010 is an annual international conference for culture and heritage online. The 2010 conference is scheduled for April 13-17 and will be held in Denver, Colorado USA.

Early registration (and lower rates) ends tomorrow, December 18. Go to this link for early registration.

It is not too late to participate in the conference. The deadline for demonstration proposals is December 31, 2009. Go to this link for more information including an online proposal form.

Virtual Museum: Mission Houses Museum, Honolulu

Honolulu's Mission Houses Museum features a "virtual exhibit" comprised of objects derived from its collections and exhibitions.

Mission Houses Museum connects the story of the American Protestant missionaries and their descendants to the history and culture of Hawai'i, in order to give present generations of residents and visitors a deeper understanding of, and appreciation for, Hawai'i's rich and complex history.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Generations Defined

Generations Defined

Traditionalists: Born 1925-1945
Generational personality: Hardworking, stable; reluctant to buck the system.

Baby Boomers: Born 1946-1964
Generational personality: Driven, team players; judgmental of those who see things differently.

Generation X: Born 1965-1980
Generational personality: Adaptable, technoliterate; poor people skills, cynical.

Millenial Generation/GenerationY: Born 1980-2000
Generational personality: Optimistic, tenacious; need supervision and structure.

History's Habits of the Mind (Bradley Commission)

History's Habits of the Mind

The perspectives and modes of thoughtful judgment derived from the study of history are many, and they ought to be its principal aim. Courses in history, geography, and government should be designed to take students well beyond formal skills of critical thinking, to help them through their own learning to:

  1. understand the significance of the past to their own lives, both private and public, and to their society.
  2. distinguish between the important and the inconsequential, to develop the "discriminating memory" needed for a discerning judgment in public and personal life.
  3. perceive past events and issues as they were experienced by people at the time, to develop historical empathy as opposed to present-mindedness.
  4. acquire at one and the same time a comprehension of diverse cultures and of shared humanity.
  5. understand how things happen and how things change, how human intentions matter, but also how their consequences are shaped by the means of carrying them out, in a tangle of purpose and process.
  6. comprehend the interplay of change and continuity, and avoid assuming that either is somehow more natural, or more to be expected, than the other.
  7. prepare to live with uncertainties and exasperating, even perilous, unfinished business, realizing that not all problems have solutions.
  8. grasp the complexity of historical causation, respect particularity, and avoid excessively abstract generalizations.
  9. appreciate the often tentative nature of judgments about the past, and thereby avoid the temptation to seize upon particular "lessons" or history as cures for present ills.
  10. recognize the importance of individuals who have made a difference in history, and the significance of personal character for both good and ill.
  11. appreciate the force of the nonrational, the irrational, the accidental, in history and human affairs.
  12. understand the relationship between geography and history as a matrix of time and place, and as context for events.
  13. read widely and critically in order to recognize the difference between fact and conjecture, between evidence and assertion, and thereby to frame useful questions.

Habits of Mind taken from:

Bradley Commission on History in Schools. Building a History Curriculum: Guidelines for Teaching History in Schools. Westlake, OH: National Council for History Education, 1995. p. 9.

History's Vital Themes and Narratives (Bradley Commission)

History's Vital Themes and Narratives
In the search for historical understanding of ourselves and others, certain themes emerge as vital, whether the subject be world history, the history of Western civilization, or the history of the United States.

Civilization, cultural diffusion, and innovation
The evolution of human skills and the means of exerting power over nature and people. The rise, interaction, and decline of successive centers of such skills and power. The cultural flowering of major civilizations in the arts, literature, and thought. The role of social, religious, and political patronage of the arts and learning. The importance of the city in different eras and places.

Human interaction with the environment
The relationships among geography, technology, and culture, and their effects on economic, social, and political developments. The choices made possible by climate, resources, and location, and the effect of culture and human values on such choices. The gains and losses of technological change. The central role of agriculture. The effect of disease, and disease-fighting, on plants, animals, and human beings.

Values, beliefs, political ideas, and institutions
The origins and spread of influential religions and ideologies. The evolution of political and social institutions, at various stages of industrial and commercial development. The interplay among ideas, material conditions, moral values, and leadership, especially in the evolution of democratic societies. The tensions between the aspirations for freedom and security, for liberty and equality, for distinction and commonality, in human affairs.

Conflict and cooperation
The many and various causes of war, and of approaches to peacemaking and war prevention. Relations between domestic affairs and ways of dealing with the outside world. Contrasts between international conflict and cooperation, between isolation and interdependence. The consequences of war and peace for societies and their cultures.

Comparative history of major developments
The characteristics of revolutionary, reactionary, and reform periods across time and place. Imperialism, ancient and modern. Comparative instances of slavery and emancipation, feudalism and centralization, human successes and failures, of wisdom and folly. Comparative elites and aristocracies; the role of family, wealth, and merit.

Patterns of social and political interaction
The changing patterns of class, ethnic, racial, and gender structures and relations. Immigration, migration, and social mobility. The effects of schooling. The new prominence of women, minorities, and the common people in the study of history, and their relation to political power and influential elites. The characterisitics of multicultural societies; forces for unity and disunity.

Vital Themes and Narratives taken from:

The Bradley Commission. Building a History Curriculum: Guidelines for Teaching History in Schools. Westlake, OH: National Council for History Education, 1995. pp. 10-11.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Remembering Pearl Harbor 68 Years Later

It was 68 years ago today that military forces of Japan's militarist dictatorship bombed Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, igniting American involvement in World War II.

In today's Honolulu Advertiser a news story features ceremonies held at Ewa Field. It was here, and not Pearl Harbor itself, where American forces first defended the nation against the attack. Click here for a link to the story. The story mentions:

About 200 people gathered yesterday at a cracked, potholed, weedy strip of concrete at 'Ewa Field, where part of the opening salvo in that long, brutal fight was fired.

'Ewa Field has a history that time has obscured. When the carrier-launched warplanes of the Japanese Empire roared in to attack Pearl Harbor, they also hit the Marine Corps Air Station in 'Ewa, where several hundred Marines were stationed and nearly 50 aircraft were on the ground at 'Ewa Field. Four Marines and two civilians at nearby 'Ewa Plantation were killed, one of them a 6-year-old girl.

In two strafing waves and other sporadic attacks, Japanese planes destroyed or damaged most of the aircraft on the tarmac. None got into the air. Machine gun and 20mm strafing gouges and burn marks can still be seen on the concrete area where the planes were tied down.

'Ewa Beach historian John Bond, who is spearheading efforts to preserve the battle site, said the attack at 'Ewa Field may have preceded the Pearl Harbor bombing by a few minutes. So it is possible that the first U.S. shots fired at Japanese forces in World War II were at 'Ewa Field. features a story about John Bond's leadership and efforts to save Ewa Field from demolition and development. Click here for a link to that story.

Historic Hawaii Foundation has also listed Ewa Field as one of Hawaii's nine most endangered historical sites. Click here for a link to Honolulu Magazine.

For teachers there are a number of resources online. Scholastic's 'My Pearl Harbor' is here.

The National Endowment for the Humanities is sponsoring Landmarks in American History and Workshop for Community College Faculty, focusing on Pacific War sites in the Honolulu area, particularly Pearl Harbor. Click here for more information on the 2010 workshops.