Jonathan Hancock is an assistant professor of history at Hendrix College. He lives in Little Rock, Arkansas, and has been a member since 2012.
Each year, in a tradition dating back over a century, major league clubs head to warm locales in the southern United States to play baseball before the regular season starts. And each year, in a tradition dating back almost as long, hometown fans and newspaper reporters follow. The history of spring training is a history of both business and media.
Following the American Civil War, the United States engaged in a process of reconstruction that was not only political and constitutional in nature, but also had serious, lasting cultural and social ramifications for the nation as a whole. During this period, formerly enslaved southern African Americans worked to reunite with families and created communities, while legislatures and courts debated who counted as a citizen and what rights they possessed. Americans were grappling with critical questions: What would freedom look like? What national identity would emerge from war?
Richard Moss is an associate professor of history at Harrisburg Area Community College. He lives in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and has been a member since 2006.
Michael Helms is a full-time information technology professional and a part-time student at North Carolina State University, where he is majoring in history. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and has been an AHA member since 2012.
Released in September 2017, The Vietnam War, Ken Burns and Lynn Novick’s 10-part, 18-hour documentary series, has been widely acclaimed by film critics. In an interview with the Harvard Gazette, Burns addressed the timing of the film, explaining, “You need the passage of time, the triangulation of scholarly information.” And yet, while historians—makers of such scholarly information—were consulted in the making of the series, their voices—and their interpretive disputes—are notably missing on screen.
John M Lawlor Jr. is professor emeritus at Reading Area Community College in Reading, Pennsylvania. He lives in Womelsdorf, Pennsylvania, and has been a member since 1972.
In the past year, historians have frequently been called upon to make meaning of news. From Confederate monuments and statues around the country to President Donald Trump’s travel ban executive orders, historians have answered the call to provide historical perspective and analysis. As AHA executive director Jim Grossman wrote recently in Perspectives, the assumption that “historians should have a voice in public culture and in public policy” is a guiding principle for the AHA’s agenda.