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Making Local History Come Alive

July 28, 2015

As a Humanities Liaison Librarian, I have tried to make students more aware of resources in our area.   With students here from all over the world, I hope that they will use their time on our campus not only to make use of on-campus learning opportunities, but also to get a taste of the local culture.

For example, the eastern part of our state is well-known for its importance during the American Revolution, but growing up in Western Pennsylvania, I was much more aware of the historical sites from the French and Indian War.   Also known as the Seven Year’s War or the War For Empire, it is hard to imagine how different the history of our country might have been if the British had lost this war.

Within driving distance of our campus are Fort Ligonier, Fort Necessity, Fort Bedford, Fort Pitt, Bushy Run Battlefield, Forbes Road, and Braddock’s Road (which was fascinating to me as a child because General Braddock had been buried in the middle of it).

History students could visit all of these sites in a long weekend or learn more about them at the following websites:

French and Indian War in Pennsylvania –

Braddock’s Road –

Bushy Run Battlefield –

Forbes Road –

Fort Bedford –

Fort Ligonier –

Fort Necessity –

Fort Pitt –

For anyone who might be interested, the 252nd Anniversary of the Battle of Bushy run will be commemorated this weekend, August 1 and 2 2015.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. August 4, 2015 11:59 am

    Judith, this is a great form of outreach. It’s become clear to me, after several interactions with researchers in the area that parts of my region’s history (northeastern PA) is somewhat undocumented, at least in a unified way. I’m wondering what kinds of tools, if any, you use to bring information about local history together and to engage the students? I recently started working on a Libguide, partially because it’s the tool that’s available, and partially because it seems somewhat well-suited for my purposes, and I’m hoping that it will be useful. It’s taking a long time for me to quite craft how extensive I want it to be, though! Also, while I think the Libguide might be useful for scholars, I’m not sure how interesting/useful it is going to be in engaging our undergraduates (probably not much…)!

    • August 4, 2015 12:09 pm

      I do include these in LibGuides and IL sessions. In addition, some of these sites are looking for interns, so I pass this information on to our Career and Professional Development Center. In addition to history, I done this with other majors.

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