Civil War scholar keynotes new history symposium at USAO

 To commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, noted historian William C. Davis is slated to present The Summer of ’62 as the keynote address for the inaugural Summer History Symposium at 7:30 p.m. on June 19 in Te Ata Memorial Auditorium at the University of Science and Arts.

Civil War scholar keynotes new history symposium at USAO


Civil War historian William C. Davis is scheduled to deliver the keynote address for the first Summer History Symposium at 7:30 p.m. on June 19 in Te Ata Memorial Auditorium at the University of Science and Arts.


The event is free and open to the public.

Davis’ lecture, titled The Summer of ‘62 will focus on the critical events of 1862 including The Battle of Antietam, the photography of Matthew Brady and President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation.

Davis is the author or editor of more than 40 books in the fields of Civil War and Southern history, as well as numerous documentary screenplays.

He was the on-camera senior consultant for 52 episodes of the Arts & Entertainment Network/History Channel series Civil War Journal, as well as historical consultant for several television and film productions, including The Blue and the Gray, George Washington and The Perfect Tribute.

Davis is the only three-time winner of the Jefferson Davis Award given for book-length works in Confederate History. He published two books in 2011, A Taste for War: The Culinary History of the Blue and the Gray and The Rogue Republic: The Shortest Revolution in American History.

Davis is a professor of history at Virginia Tech and serves as director of programs at that institution’s Virginia Center for Civil War Studies.

Dr. James Finck, assistant professor of history at USAO, was instrumental in helping to create the new symposium as well as selecting its first keynote speaker.

"As a former student of Professor Davis' and an admirer of his scholarship on the Civil War, I take special pride in being able to introduce his work to USAO students and the community at large. As 2012 is the 150th anniversary of the events of 1862, his lecture seemed like the perfect kick-off to our series," Finck said.

The Summer History Symposium is scheduled to continue with Civil War themed addresses through 2015.

The new event joins two other successful series – the Ray and Mary Giles Symposium on Citizenship and Public Service and the Emerson-Wier Liberal Arts Symposium – as part of a yearly series sponsored by the USAO Foundation.

“The USAO Foundation is excited about launching this third component of our popular symposia series,” said Dr. Michael Nealeigh, vice-president for university advancement. “The Summer History Symposia is the ideal complement to our two existing events and should serve a similar end of providing access to internationally recognized lecturers for our students and interested members of the Oklahoma community.”

Recent keynote speakers at the symposia include Guggenheim Fellow recipient James Fowler, international commentator and best-selling author Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Booker Prize winning author Margaret Atwood and civil rights activist Minnijean Brown-Trickey.

More information about the Summer History Symposium can be obtained by calling 405-574-1283.

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