HI 277: Public History

Class Program
Credits 4.0
How is the past remembered? How do we get our ideas about history outside the traditional classroom? How do venues like museums shape how we understand past? Public history, or applied history, refers to history that you find in public spaces outside of the pages of academic journals and beyond college walls. We encounter examples of public history every day through exhibits, performances, walking tours, visits to historic sites, books, film, etc. This introductory course familiarizes students with examples of public history, with a focus on community engagement, unique hands-on experiences, and service hours with community partners. Through course readings, activities, guest speakers, and site visits, students learn how the study of history may be applied in public fields. Potential community partners include the Findley Congressional Office Museum, the Khalaf A1 Habtoor Archives at Illinois College, the Prairie Land Heritage Center, the Governor Duncan Mansion, the Heritage Cultural Center Museum, etc.