From: Lisa Mighetto <>
Subject: ASEH News Fall Issue
Fall 2007
Volume 18, Issue 3
This is the first electronic issue of the newsletter. Members that responded to our inquiry about paper copies in the 2007 spring and summer issues will receive them in the mail. We will continue to store back issues of the newsletter (since 2001) on our website under "Publications."
Let us know what you think of this new format; send comments to
See the Table of Contents below ("In This Issue") and click on the article that you wish to read. When you finish an article, scroll back up to the Table of Contents and click on the next article that you wish to read.
In This Issue
Column: From the President's Desk
Column: The Profession
Member News
ASEH Awards Submissions - Final Notice
ASEH Committee Updates - JSTOR Announcement and Outreach Call for Participation
Call for Proposals to Host ASEH Conference
In Memoriam: John F. Richards, 1938-2007
From the President's Desk: Climate Change and ASEH's Boise Conference

The theme of ASEH's next conference (March 12-16, 2008 in Boise) is global warming, or more precisely, "Agents of Change: People, Climate, and Places through Time."  Anyone paying the slightest bit of attention knows that global warming is certainly in the media's spotlight.  From Al Gore's powerpoints in An Inconvenient Truth, to Walmart's recent announcement that it intends to reduce the carbon footprints of its international supply chains, global warming is big news and bigger business.


     But what's largely missing in this discussion is some sense of the humanistic dimensions of global warming. This is puzzling, because put bluntly, global warming is a humanistic tragedy, not an environmental tragedy.  It's not the earth that is going to be devastated by climate change.  Mass extinctions in evolutionary history are typically followed by mass speciations.  New species will surely evolve to fill the niches vacated by the extinctions piling up in ever great numbers. The earth will persist - different, surely, but that's the way things go in evolutionary time.  The looming terrors of global warming - massive fires, floods, famines, with refugees in their millions fleeing too much water in Bangladesh, too little water in the Sudan - these are all tragedies in historical time, not in evolutionary time.


     What's threatened by global warming is not the earth but ourselves. What won't persist is our sense of place and time - our own human histories on this earth. It's the places we love, the relationships we cherish with the species that make their homes in those particular places, that help make us human.  As Wallace Stegner reminded us, we see the world through our own human eyes, and it's that human vision of the world that is under threat.


     John Burns, a naturalist in the northwoods of Wisconsin, writes in Paradise Lost: Climate Change in the North Woods:


"The climate change scenarios currently projected for Wisconsin at the end of this century utterly boggle the mind. Conservative middle-ground scenarios show Wisconsin becoming the climatological equivalent of Arkansas, while Madison's climate will morph into a twin of Oklahoma City . . . Meanwhile, the North Woods may gradually transition into an oak savannah.  That's so difficult to imagine, so close to what we can only think of as science fiction, that all of us have a great deal of trouble even conceiving of the possibility. Yet there it is, looming on the horizon like the eerie bruised sky that so often precedes a tornado. But how does one address the coming of a tornado, much less the coming of a global environmental upheaval? Climate change is such a vast topic, the terminology so difficult, the computer-modeled evidence so complex, the potential loss so enormous that it is nearly impossible to get our arms around it."


     The potential loss is indeed difficult to comprehend, and the perspectives that historians can bring to the discussion  are critical. Who wins, and who loses, when the climate changes? Who has the power to define the terms of the debates over global warming? How can humanistic perspectives help us understand people, climate, and places through time? The ASEH conference in Boise, March 12-16, 2008, is a wonderful opportunity for us to engage in this important conversation. Come to Boise!


Nancy Langston, ASEH President

The Profession: How Historians Can Assist Environmental Restoration Projects
Historical records can prove very valuable in environmental restoration work by revealing the locations of early fence lines, trails, and grazing areas, as pictured in this example from Red Rock Canyon State Park. Read more about how environmental historians can assist scientists in these projects in the article below.


By David A. Bainbridge, Sustainable Management, Alliant International University, San Diego


Probably more environmental restoration projects have failed from lack of due diligence in analyzing historical impacts and changes in ecosystem structure and function than for any other reason. Yet developing a site environmental history is not difficult or costly. Hiring an environmental historian to develop a site environmental history can help project biologists and environmental scientists understand what types of disturbances to look for, reveal historical or archeological sites that should be protected, and identify special problem areas where ecosystem structure and function have been dramatically altered.

       A better sense of environmental history can also help refine restoration plans for a site. An environmental historian can help restoration planners decide what the restoration goals should be by determining what was on the site in the past. In Southern California for example, we might consider a restoration goal of 2006 (before current disturbance), 1890 (before widespread farming), 1800 (before extensive grazing), or 10,000 or 25,000 years ago, before people arrived. Ideally we would like to find an undisturbed reference site; but there are few, if any, undisturbed sites in Southern California.


     We can learn a great deal by developing a good site environmental history. In many cases more information is available to us than we might first suspect. The visit of Jedidiah Smith to San Diego in 1827 is a good example of what we can learn from historical study. He noted the oaks and pines around Old Town. These had to be Torrey Pines (Pinus torreyana), but by the time botanists got here they were all gone except for a small grove near Del Mar. Ethnoecologist Florence Shipek also unearthed evidence of the presence of Torrey Pines on Point Loma through interviews with Kumeyaay elders and field work. Research is also highlighting the potential impacts of prehistoric management activities that can affect restoration.


     An environmental history can also help identify the likely disturbance effects on a site. This can enable limited resources to be focused on the changes in ecosystem structure and function that are most likely to be an issue. A detailed study can identify the location of old roads, corrals, building sites, and other disturbances that will require special efforts during the restoration project. It may also help identify special problems that may demand special soil or water tests, such as the use of boron as a weed killer in early industrial areas.


     Many consulting firms neglect environmental history because they do not have an environmental historian on staff. Researching environmental history takes training and experience; it is very local, with resources varying widely from place to place. Going back in time through papers, photographs, maps, books, air photos, fieldwork, and the internet starts out as a scientific and historical procedure, but often ends up as an "art."


     Expertise in environmental historical research is often needed by ecologists, biologists and others who are trained in the latest science - but not very well versed in history. If you are interested in expanding your environmental history work to include restoration you might arrange a meeting with your local restoration firms (you can look them up in the yellow pages or on-line). You might also contact and/or join the Society for Ecological Restoration; see


Recommended Reading:

Bainbridge, D. A. 2007. A Guide for Desert and Dryland Restoration. Island Press, Washington, DC 391 p. (see especially Chapter 4 which describes site evaluation).

Egan, D. and E. A. Howell. 2001. The Historical Ecology Handbook: A Restorationist's Guide to Reference Ecosystems. Island Press, Washington, DC. (see especially Chapter 2, by M. Kat Anderson).

Sandor, A., P.L. Gersper and J.W. Hawley. 1990. Prehistoric agricultural terraces and soils in the Mimbres area, New Mexico. World Archeology 22(1):70-86.

Smith, J. S. 1977 [1827]. The Southwest Expedition of Jedediah. S. Smith. Univesity of Nebraska Press, Lincoln, NE.

Birds of Prey
ASEH's conference in Boise will include a field trip to the Birds of Prey National Conservation Area.
For information on our Boise conference, including free workshops, speakers, travel grants, field trips, and more, see our website at

New Graduate Fellowship Available in Environmental History


Georgetown University announces a graduate fellowship for Ph.D. students in environmental history.  Each year the History Department and Graduate School will provide a renewable, five-year fellowship (covering tuition, living stipend, and health insurance) to an entering Ph.D. student in any area of environmental history.  Interested students should contact John McNeill at:   Details concerning Georegtown's History Ph.D. program may be found at:


AMS Graduate Fellowship in the History of Science


Deadline: Application packages must be postmarked by  February 8, 2008.


The American Meteorological Society (AMS) is pleased to invite applications for 2007/2008 AMS Graduate Fellowship in the History of science, to be awarded to a student wishing to complete a dissertation on the history of the atmospheric, or related oceanic or hydrologic sciences. The award carries a $15000 stipend and will support one year of dissertation research. Fellowships cannot be deferred and must be used for the year awarded, but can be used to support research at a location away from the student's institution provided the plan is approved by the student's thesis advisor.

The goal of the graduate fellowship is to generate a dissertation topic in the history of the atmospheric, or related oceanic or hydrologic sciences, and to foster close working relations between historians and scientists. An effort will be made to place the student into a mentoring relationship with an AMS member at an appropriate institution. The fellowship is sponsored by member donations to the AMS 21st Century campaign.

Eligibility Criteria                                          
Candidates wishing to apply must be a graduate student in good standing who proposes to complete a dissertation as described above. To apply, candidates must submit the following:

  • a cover letter with vita
  • official transcripts from undergraduate and graduate institutions
  • a typewritten, detailed description of the dissertation topic and proposed research plan (10-page maximum)
  • three letters of recommendation (including one from your dissertation advisor)

Application Procedures
Application packages and supporting materials should be sent to:

Attn: History Fellowship
45 Beacon Street
Boston, MA 02108-3693

For links to the application packet, go to

Direct any questions to Donna Sampson, 617. 227.2426 ext. 246 or Stephanie Armstrong, 617.227.2426 ext. 235.  It is the applicant's responsibility to ensure that all materials are received at AMS Headquarters by the closing date; applicants are encouraged to check with AMS in early March regarding the status of their application package.  AMS encourages applications from women, minorities, and disabled students who are traditionally underrepresented in the atmospheric and related oceanic sciences.  Candidates must be U.S. citizens or hold permanent resident status and must be pursuing a degree at a U.S. institution.


Positions Open


Scholar in U.S. Energy Policy and Its Social Impact

The Honors College of the University of Oklahoma invites applications for a tenure-track assistant professor or tenured associate professor whose research focuses on U.S. energy policy and its social impact.  The successful applicant will be the Donald Keith Jones endowed professor in the Honors College. Applicants' scholarship may have either a historical or contemporary focus.  Applications are encouraged from scholars who employ critical, interdisciplinary approaches to topics such as the history of energy policy in the U.S., the relationship between U.S. energy policy and foreign affairs, the environmental consequences of energy policy, and the social impact of energy policy implementation in the past and present.  Candidates from any discipline in the social sciences or humanities will be considered.  Preference will be given to applicants who are committed to interdisciplinary scholarship and teaching and show promise of pedagogical and scholarly excellence.  The successful candidate will join an interdisciplinary faculty focused on American Studies, broadly defined. The appointment will be in the Honors College (with tenure given there) and with an affiliation to an appropriate department on campus.


Candidates must have a completed Ph.D. by the start of the appointment (August 2008). Applications, including a cover letter, curriculum vitae, three letters of reference, and a chapter-length writing sample should be sent to Dr. Rich Hamerla, Chair, Donald Keith Jones Position Search Committee, Honors College, David L. Boren Hall, 1300 Asp Ave., University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73019-6061.  No electronic applications will be accepted.


The committee will begin reviewing applications on October 15, 2007 and will continue the process until the position is filled.  The University of Oklahoma is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer, committed to cultural diversity and compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.  Women and minorities are strongly encouraged to apply.


For more information regarding the University of Oklahoma and the OU Honors College, please visit the following Web sites: and


Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA.

Assistant Professor in the Department of Science and Technology in Society, tenure track. The successful candidate must have a demonstrable background and research agenda in interdisciplinary Science and Technology Studies. We especially encourage applications from candidates who will help us build upon existing connections with other units in the university. See our website  for these connections. We are particularly interested in applicants working in bioethics, especially environmental ethics and related areas. The candidate will be expected to teach three semester courses per year, undergraduate and graduate, along with research, advising, and service responsibilities. Evidence of a strong research program and teaching experience required. Salary commensurate with experience. Ph.D. in STS or related field completed by August 2008. Candidates can find information about our programs, faculty, and course descriptions at:


Interested candidates should apply online at and refer to posting 070950.  As part of your online application please attach a C.V., evidence of teaching ability (use other doc field), and a writing sample (use other doc 2 field).  In addition, please send three letters of reference to: 


Ellsworth Fuhrman, Chair,

Department of Science and Technology in Society

133 Lane Hall

Virginia Tech

Blacksburg, VA 24061-0247



We will start reviewing applications on November 12, 2007, but will accept applications until the position is filled. Virginia Tech has a strong commitment to the principle of diversity and, in that spirit, seeks a broad spectrum of candidates including women, minorities, veterans, and people with disabilities.  Individuals with disabilities desiring accommodation in the application process should notify Ellsworth Fuhrman.

Colorado State University, Environmental History
Assistant Professor, tenure-track, nine-month position beginning August
15, 2008. Competitive entry-level salary.
Qualifications and Responsibilities
The History Department seeks a specialist in environmental history with
a primary focus on a region or regions outside the U.S. The Ph.D. in
history or allied field must be completed by the time of employment.
Preferred sub-specialties include the history of science, technology,
medicine, disease, agriculture, development, and sustainability. An
imperial, comparative, or trans-regional approach is desirable. The
successful candidate will be expected to teach undergraduate and
graduate courses in environmental history, a survey course in western
civilization or world history, and upper-level courses in his or her
national and/or regional specialization(s). Applications are invited
from candidates who offer promise of significant research and
publication, and who can work effectively with faculty, students, and
the public.
Applications will be accepted until the position is filled, but to
ensure full consideration application materials should be postmarked no
later than November 1, 2007. Send letter of interest, curriculum vitae,
official graduate transcripts, evidence of teaching effectiveness, three
letters of recommendation, and a writing sample (article or chapter
length) to Dr. Jared Orsi, Chair, Environmental History Search
Committee, Department of History, Colorado State University, Fort
Collins, CO, 80523-1776. This is an open search: application materials,
including letters of recommendation, of semifinalist candidates will be
made available for review by the entire faculty of the Department of
Colorado State University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action
employer and complies with all federal and Colorado state laws,
regulations, and executive orders regarding affirmative action
requirements. The Office of Equal Opportunity is located in Room 101,
Student Services. To assist Colorado State University in meeting its
affirmative action responsibilities, ethnic minorities, women, and other
protected class members are encouraged to apply and so identify themselves.


Special Issue of Geographical Review Released


The Geographical Review is pleased to announce the release of a special issue on "Islands."  Guest editors David Lowenthal and John Gillis have assembled a stunning collection of essays that explore, in graceful prose, the many facets of islands and island life.  Authors hail from the academy, but also literary and artistic backgrounds.  This diverse group considers islands as places that societies across the globe associate with punishment and paradise, refuge and pilgrimage, and as home or conversely as places to avoid.   In sum, they note that islands "elicit . . . an extraordinary medley of reactions."


Among the contributors are author Adam Nicholson, Godfrey Baldacchino, Canada Research Chair in Island Studies at the University of Prince Edward Island, geographer Kenneth Olwig, Philip Conkling, founder of the Island Institute, historian Matt Matsuda, ethnologist Orvar Lofgren, anthropologist Karen Fog Olwig, historian John Gillis, historian of the Pacific Island peoples Greg Dening, and geographer David Lowenthal.   While coming from different backgrounds, they share lengthy and deep attachments to islands - from Staten Island, New York to a remote and craggy pilgrimage site in the north Atlantic, and widely dispersed islands across the south Pacific.


For those who share a fascination with islands, we encourage you to glace through this special issue.  We are confident that you will want to linger over every article.


To subscribe or view the table of contents visit the Geographical Review web site: or to order additional copies of this issue you may contact the American Geographical Society at


For further information contact: Craig E. Colten, Editor, Geographical Review,



European Union Archives Now Available at University of Pittsburgh

The supranational organization now known as the European Union (EU) is 50 years old.  In the last 20 years or so, the EU has grown to the point where it is 1) a major influence on its member states in nearly all policy areas, and 2) a significant influence and player in world politics. Like any organization, the EU has produced a "government documents" collection throughout its 50 years.  The Delegation of the European Commission to the USA, Washington DC (in effect, the European Union's embassy to the US) recently donated its entire library/archive collection - containing the complete "government document" collection since the 1950s - to the University Library System, University of Pittsburgh.  When combined with the electronic collection already online on the EU's website "Europa" (containing materials published mostly between 1995 and 2007), this new collection at the University of Pittsburgh constitutes nearly a full run of "official" EU government documents.  This collection includes the Official Journal, dozens of annual and periodical reports, and literally tens of thousands of monographs.   The collection contains over 3,000 linear shelf feet of paper documents and 120 feet of microfiche.


This collection contains a significant amount of unique primary research material on many aspects of the recent history of public health and medicine including:


ˇ        many aspects of public health and health care

ˇ         environmental and industrial health issues

ˇ         regulations pertaining to the health care professions

ˇ         legislation regulating drug and substance abuse issues

ˇ         a wide variety of social issues affecting health

ˇ         medical technology and research issues

ˇ        issues pertaining to women's health

ˇ        global health concerns

ˇ        health policies

ˇ        specific diseases

ˇ        biomedical ethics

ˇ        demographics

Since the EU has been very involved in providing support for health care initiatives in many third world nations there is a large amount of material pertaining to the health issues in a number of third world countries over the past fifty years. This is far from an exhaustive list of the history of medicine/public health topics to be found in this great resource.  The EU has significantly increased its authority over its member states during the last 20 years as well as expanded to include many of the countries in the former Soviet Union, so there are more materials available for the last 20 years.  The publications from the 1950s-1990 period are entered in a traditional paper card catalog, with author, subject and title indexes; publications 1990-2004 are cataloged in an electronic file with the same three access points.


Daily access to the EU Archives will be overseen by Dr. Phillip Wilkin of Hillman Library. He can be reached at or 412-648-7829. For information about available housing near the University of Pittsburgh contact Dr. Jonathon Erlen, or 412-648-8927. The entire EU Archives should be on the shelves and ready for visiting scholars by October 1, 2007.


Call for Papers: World History Association Conference
University of London, Queen Mary College, Mile End Campus
June 25-29, 2008

Themes: Global Cities and The Sea: Highway of Change

Queen Mary College will host the Seventeenth Annual World History Association Conference at its Mile End campus in London, June 25 through 29, 2008.

The conference begins with registration and a reception on June 26. Panel sessions and other conference-related activities will commence June 27 and continue to midday on the 29th. The WHA will also offer optional activities for conferees who arrive on June 25.


Reasonably priced accommodations, including daily breakfast and lunch, will be available at Queen Mary. Plans include five- or four-night packages, June 25-29 and June 26-29, departing in both instances on the 30th. Information regarding housing, registration, the keynote speakers, and related issues will begin appearing on the WHA website in September 2007.


The World History Association invites proposals from scholars and teachers around the world for full panels, single papers, and roundtables on topics related to the scholarly and/or pedagogical aspects of the conference's themes, "Global Cities" and "The Sea: Highway of Change." Proposals must be submitted using the forms and guidelines available at


Deadline for Proposals: January 15, 2008


Due to the need for early notification and travel planning, no proposal will be accepted after the deadline. Presenters must register for the conference by May 1, 2008 to be included in the printed program.


Call for Papers:  Designing the Parks


A conference in two parts examining the design of buildings and landscapes in regional, state, and national parks.  Sponsored by the University of Virginia, the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, and the National Park Service.


Designing the Parks, Part 1: The History of Park Planning and Design

Charlottesville, Virginia (May 20-22, 2008)


Designing the Parks, Part 2: The Present and Future of Park Planning and Design

San Francisco, California (Fall 2008)


This conference will meet for three days in Charlottesville, Virginia (May 20-22, 2008).  A three-day work session in San Francisco will follow in the fall of 2008.  In Charlottesville the meeting will be hosted by the University of Virginia and the papers presented will address the history of the planning and design of regional, state, and national parks.  The San Francisco meeting, which will be held at the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, will explore current issues and future trends in park planning and design, building on the research presented the Charlottesville meeting.


Designing the Parks, Part I: The History of Park Planning and Design,

The University of Virginia, Charlottesville (May 20-22, 2008)


The papers presented at the Charlottesville meeting of Designing the Parks will feature new research into the history of the planning and design of regional, state, and national parks.  Many aspects of park design will be considered, including buildings, designed landscapes, park roads, interpretive design, or any other aspect of how parks have preserved and presented nature and history to the public.  The emphasis of the papers will be on the inherent meaning, ideology, and intent of large public parks as works of design, with a particular focus on design expression in state and national parks.  Papers will also address the social, economic, and political contexts within which each park was designed and constructed, and will attempt to assess the relevance of historic park management strategies to the issues facing park managers today.


Abstracts should be submitted by January 7, 2008.   Please include short résumés, titles, affiliations, and full contact information for all presenters.  Participants are invited to submit abstracts for any of the thematic sessions suggested below, or to propose their own thematic session.  The titles and descriptions of these sessions will be altered or developed as needed, and open sessions will also be organized for papers not easily grouped thematically.



 Municipal Landscape Parks

Yosemite, Yellowstone, and Early Park Preservation

Scenic and Historic Preservation

The Evolution of Park Ideals

Rustic Park Design

Automotive Tourism

The CCC and the State Park

Modernism in the Parks

Historical and Urban Park Design

Nature and Culture in Park Design

The Battles over Battlefields

Colonial Revival and Park Design

Presidential Sites

The Archeological Park

New Stories Told


Send abstracts as attachments to:

or mail to:



University of Virginia, Campbell Hall
P.O. Box 400122
Charlottesville VA 22904-4122


For more information contact Ethan Carr ( or Shaun Eyring, NPS-Northeast Regional Office (, or Stephanie Toothman, NPS-Pacific West Regional Office (



Member News

David Bainbridge, Associate Professor, Sustainable Management, Alliant International University, San Diego, taught a workshop on desert restoration at the Lake Mead National Recreation Area in June for 60 people from throughout the Southwest. This workshop celebrated the completion of his latest book, A Guide for Desert and Dryland Restoration (Island Press, June 2007).  This fully illustrated, comprehensive (391 pages) handbook should prove useful to environmental historians interested in arid lands around the world. It includes a chapter on assessing environmental damage.  The book's web site,

includes powerpoints in English and Spanish, a syllabus, and more detailed notes for professors and teachers. For more information, contact:


Diana Davis, University of Texas at Austin, has been awarded a John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship and a Charles A. Ryskamp Fellowship (ACLS) for her new project "Imperialism and Environmental History in the Middle East."


The Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) is pleased to announce the recent appointment of  Leo B. Slater as the Laboratory's new historian. Dr. Slater will provide historical support to the NRL command, maintain the Laboratory's corporate memory, administer the oral history program, and carry out other preservation duties.  He comes to NRL from the Office of NIH History and Museum at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland. Dr. Slater can be reached via email to To learn more about NRL and its history, visit


Paul Hirt, Arizona State University, and the Grand Canyon Association received a grant of $365,000 over three years (2007-2010) from the National Endowment for the Humanities "We The People" Initiative. The project, called "Interpreting America's Historic Places: Nature, Culture, and History at the Grand Canyon," is described below:

The Grand Canyon is one of the most identifiable and remarkable landscapes on earth and the most internationally recognized symbol of nature in North America.  But this grand natural wonder is also, importantly, a cultural landscape.  It has been lived in, traveled through, feared, marveled at, exploited for profit, and utilized for education and inspiration by an incredibly diverse array of people over a very long time.  The national park, which presently protects this stunning landscape, is an artifact of contemporary times and reflects a distinct set of values about the relationship between nature and culture.  But those values and the manner in which they have been expressed are not static.  The park itself, its boundaries and management policies, its meaning and significance to Americans, its caretakers, residents, and visitors have all evolved in fascinating ways during the past 100 years.  Our aim in this project is to explore the cultural significance of the canyon to those people who have lived here or passed through during the past 400 years. We will explore the ways that this unique place has influenced American science, art, environmental values, popular culture, tourism, and leisure. To accomplish these goals, the project team will develop an interactive website and DVD exploring the human history of the Grand Canyon; a pedestrian audiotour of the Grand Canyon Village historic district and various locations on the North Rim and along the trails in the inner gorge; brochures for park visitors; "traveling trunks" for public school teachers with curriculum and classroom materials; training seminars for park interpreters; and public lectures.

For more information, contact:
Paul Hirt or Linda Sargent-Wood
Department of History
Arizona State University
Tempe, AZ  85287-4302
E-mail: or


Sierra Club's New Website Features ASEH Member John Reiger


John Reiger, professor of history at Ohio University-Chillicothe, has been selected as the first individual interviewed for "Sierra Sportsmen," a website that the Sierra Club recently launched to reach out to hunters and anglers.


As the story notes, "Dr. Reiger literally 'wrote the book' on the history of American sportsmen and conservation, called American Sportsmen and the Origins of Conservation." The book was originally published in 1975 and was revised in 2001.


The book points out that hunters and anglers were the first to see the decline of certain species of wildlife and spurred people to be concerned. "They got fed up with finding local streams depleted and their favorite marshes occupied by market hunters with no concept of limits and no restraints," Reiger said.


According to Reiger, hunters and anglers are, by inclination, natural conservationists. "Sportsmen have a vested interest in seeing wildlife thrive. Being out in the field, they are able to see and experience wildlife trends. Hunters and anglers should all be concerned with wildlife first and the killing of game second. We share the same concerns as non-hunters, and that is the protection of wildlife habitats."


"Hunting and fishing teach a reverence for wildlife," Reiger noted. "It seems a paradox, but there is a 'Code of the Sportsman' that calls on hunters and anglers to pursue game and fish in a sporting manner by giving the prey an opportunity to escape and relying on the individual's skill. It is more difficult but more rewarding."


As an example, Reiger points to one of his first boyhood hunting experiences when he opted to take aim at a duck in flight rather than shooting the fowl while resting on the water.


The Sierra Club's launching of this new website shows that more people are realizing the potential clout of hunters and anglers as they work toward the preservation of a natural world in a healthy state, Reiger said. "The decline of wildlife habitats is most often caused by contamination and other factors that negatively impact habitats such as marshlands and ponds that are not the work of hunters."


"The Sierra Club seems to be casting a wider net to include all of those who are concerned about the environment," Reiger said. "Previously, sportsmen were left on the sideline."


Before he joined the faculty at OU-C in 1988, Reiger spent five years as executive director of the Connecticut Audubon Society.


The Sierra Sportsmen story can be found online at


ASEH Awards Submissions - Final Notice
This year ASEH's prize committees will evaluate submissions (published books and articles and completed dissertations) that appear between November 1, 2006 and October 31, 2007. Please send three copies of each submission (these must be hard copies, or paper copies) by November 7, 2007 to:
Lisa Mighetto
c/o Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences Program
University of Washington
Box 358436
1900 Commerce Street
Tacoma, WA  98402-3100
ASEH Committee Updates - JSTOR Announcement and Outreach Call for Participation
Back Issues of Environmental History Soon to be Available Online

ASEH's Publications Committee reported in the winter 2006 newsletter that JSTOR will be posting back issues of our journal, Environmental History,

as well as its predecessors. We have just learned that these will be available in the JSTOR archive at the end of October 2007. Watch ASEH's website  ( for details.

"From the Mountain to the Sea": ASEH Outreach to SCB 2008

By Kate Christen, Smithsonian Institution (Chair, Outreach Committee)


The Society for Conservation Biology (SCB) annual meeting in Chattanooga, TN, July 13-18, 2008, themed as titled above, is focused on examining several major ecosystems (terrestrial; freshwater; coastal; marine) as separate and connected entities. The meeting offers a marvelous opportunity for environmental historians and those in allied fields to present research results in a gathering regularly attended by nearly 2000 conservation biologists and other conservation professionals from U.S. and worldwide academic institutions, government agencies and NGOs.


     SCB recently published the call for conference contributions, which are sought from all fields of conservation research and practice, including the social sciences and humanities. The deadline for proposals for organized symposia, discussion groups, workshops, and short courses is October 24; the deadline for contributed papers, posters, and "speed presentations" is January 16, 2008 (for more information on these categories, see my descriptive article (p. 7) of the Winter, 2006 ASEH newsletter).  Detailed information about SCB, the meeting theme, logistics, and proposal submissions is found at


     This summer meeting provides environmental historians a great opportunity to share our research findings with conservation science practitioners, and could even facilitate an environmentally oriented family vacation or comparative research trip. Next year's venue offers a range of field trip opportunities, both SCB- and self-organized, to beautiful mountains and scenic waterways, from the summit of Lookout Mountain to the banks of the Tennessee River, encompassing thick forests (2.5 hours to Great Smoky Mountains National Park), limestone caverns, and underground waterfalls.


      Environmental historians are familiar to many SCB attendees, after ASEH outreach activities at prior SCB meetings, including an organized discussion at the July 2007 conference in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, "Environmental History and Conservation Biology: Building Links to Support Biodiversity Conservation," discussing intersections of these fields, with a topical focus on African and Asian elephant conservation and management. Discussion participants included historian Jane Carruthers (University of South Africa), literature professor Dan Wylie (Rhodes University, Grahamstown); lawyer and professor Tracy Dobson (Michigan State University and Humanities Representative, SCB Board of Directors); and biologists David Cumming (University of Cape Town) and Peter Leimgruber (Smithsonian Institution).


     Chattanooga offers an optimal opportunity for organizing historically-themed symposia. Panels that combine historians and natural scientists to discuss such topics as, for example, historical dynamics of northeastern US cod populations, would be ideally placed at this conference. If you have questions about SCB and potential conference opportunities not addressed by the links above, please contact me at

Pictured left to right: Dan Wylie, Kate Christen, Dan Cumming, Jane Carruthers, Tracy Dobson, and Peter Leimgruber, presenters in the SCB organized discussion on Environmental History and Conservation Biology, Port Elizabeth, South Africa, July 2007. Kate chaired the session and introduced the discussion.
Call for Proposals to Host ASEH Conference
ASEH's Site Selection Committee is now soliciting proposals from individuals or groups who are interested in hosting the annual meeting of the American Society for Environmental History in 2011 and 2012. Those interested should contact the Chair of the Site Selection Committee, Sarah S. Elkind
Department of History, San Diego State University, 5500 Campanile Drive, San Diego, CA 92182-6050  for a copy of the ASEH's Conference Guidelines and other information.  The Deadline for submission of proposals for the 2011 meeting is January 15, 2008.  Please keep in mind that hosting a conference requires substantial effort and time as well as significant institutional support, and that the proposed local arrangement chair must reside in the city proposed.
In Memoriam: John F. Richards, 1938-2007
By Richard Tucker, University of Michigan


John F. Richards, Professor of History at Duke University, passed away on August 23, 2007, at age 68.  Richards was a pioneer in world environmental history, and a past president of ASEH. Over the past quarter century his work has added an environmental dimension to a wide range of existing historical disciplines, including economic and fiscal history, political history and world systems. From an early career in the history of Mughal India, he became an outstanding team worker and sponsor of younger environmental historians, beginning with his co-editing of two volumes on the modern history of global forest reduction. He moved on from there to rigorously detailed land use and vegetation histories of large areas of Asia, in collaboration with scientists at Woods Hole and other research centers. His environmental history writings culminated in the publication of The Unending Frontier: Environmental History of the Early Modern World in 2003. He was also a major force in building research institutions and lobbying to strengthen their resources. In early 2007 he was awarded the career achievement award of the Association for Asian Studies. John Richards's remarkably wide scope, proverbial scholarly rigor and cherished enthusiasm will be sorely missed.

ASEH News is a publication of the American Society for Environmental History.


  • Nancy Langston, Department of Forest Ecology and Management, University of Wisconsin-Madison, President
  • Harriet Ritvo, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Vice President/President Elect
  • Mark Madison, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Treasurer
  • Ellen Stroud, Bryn Mawr College, Secretary

Executive Committee:

  • Kathleen Bronson, University of Houston
  • Peter Coates, University of Bristol, United Kingdom
  • Paul Hirt, Arizona State University
  • Nancy Jacobs, Brown University
  • Katherine Morrissey, University of Arizona
  • Mark Stoll, Texas Tech University
  • Verena Winiwarter, University of Vienna, Austria 

Ex Officio, Past Presidents:

  • Carolyn Merchant, University of California-Berkeley
  • Stephen Pyne, Arizona State University
  • Douglas Weiner, University of Arizona 

Ex Officio, Executive Director and Editor, ASEH News:

  • Lisa Mighetto, University of Washington-Tacoma 

Ex Officio, H-Environment Representative:

  • Melissa Wiedenfeld, HNTB 

Ex Officio, Editor, Environmental History:

  • Mark Cioc, University of California-Santa Cruz




Mark Kurlansky to Speak at Boise Conference
The Boise Program Committee is pleased to announce that Mark Kurlansky, author of Cod: A Biography of the Fish That Changed the World, will deliver the keynote address on Saturday evening, March 15, 2008. For more information on speakers for special events, click here.
This quarterly newsletter is a publication of the American Society for Environmental History. For more information, or to submit an article, contact
Quick Links
Attention ASEH Members
Click here to add your info. to our Directory of Members and Experts.
Attention Authors and Presses

Our conference in Boise will include a large exhibit area. For online and printable exhibit forms, click here. For authors and presses that would like to display books but do not plan to reserve a table, Scholar's Choice is an option.
This email was sent to, by
American Society for Environmental History | UW Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences Program | 1900 Commerce Street | Tacoma | WA | 98402