You’re Invited: 4th Annual Public History Symposium, March 13

Please join us on Friday, March 13, for the 4th annual Public History Graduate Symposium, as we explore “History Through a Prism: Untold Stories,” with keynote speaker and Emmy-winning aviation filmmaker Adam White, in the Wright State University Student Union Apollo Room, 9:00-4:30.

Adam White graduated from Wright State University’s film program in 1995 with a degree in Motion Picture Production. He has won regional Emmy awards for several PBS documentary films. With over 15 years of experience, Adam has filmed on four continents, working in film, HD and beyond. In addition to working as a Director of Photography, Adam is also an experienced SteadiCam owner/operator. Adam White’s film company is Hemlock Films, an award-winning, full-service production company specializing in commercial film, aviation video production and Steadicam. The company produces high quality, professional works from industrials and commercials, to aviation videos, to mainstream feature films. Based out of his hometown of Cleveland, Ohio, Adam is also a licensed private pilot. According to Adam, aviation cinema means great storytelling; to dive deep into a story’s true nature and reveal its details and emotion.

The symposium will be a thought-provoking day of panels featuring the research of Wright State University Public History graduate students and networking with other public history professionals.

This event is free and open to the public, and free and convenient parking is available at the Student Union. Although the symposium is free, we are requesting RSVPs by March 6 for the purpose of estimating seating and catering needs. You can register online, or call the Archives at (937) 775-2092 to register.

You can learn more detailed information about the panel topics below, or download a printable (PDF) schedule. You may also want to visit the Public History Symposium’s Facebook page.

Public History Graduate Symposium 2015 Schedule

Public History Graduate Symposium 2015 Schedule

Learn more from the Wright State News Room.

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Groundhog Day Notes

On February 2, 1915, Bishop Milton Wright wrote the following as part of the day’s diary entry:

…This is ground hog day. There is not a ray of sunshine.

(As there was “not a ray of sunshine,” it would seem that the groundhog probably did not see his shadow on that day, thus predicting that spring will come sooner.)

But this made us curious about how long “Groundhog Day” (the holiday, not the movie) has been around. Obviously, people were aware of it in 1915.

According to New World Encyclopedia, Groundhog Day in America dates back to at least as early as 1841.

On February 4, 1841, storekeeper James Morris of Morgantown, Pennsylvania, wrote in his diary:

Last Tuesday, the 2nd, was Candlemas day, the day on which, according to the Germans, the Groundhog peeps out of his winter quarters and if he sees his shadow he pops back for another six weeks nap, but if the day be cloudy he remains out, as the weather is to be moderate.

According to the encyclopedia citation, Morris’s diary is in the collections of Historical Society of Berks County, in Reading, Pennsylvania.

And the Historical Society’s Director of Collections, Kimberly (Richards) Brown, just happens to be a Wright State University Public History graduate (class of 2004).

So we contacted Kim to inquire about Morris’s diary, and she was kind enough to send us a scan, along with permission to post it here on the blog. (We added the blue box to highlight the location of the February 4th entry on the page.)

James Morris diary entry for Feb. 4, 1841. Courtesy of The Berks History Center, Reading PA, item location T 83, Vol. 1.

James Morris diary entry for Feb. 4, 1841. Courtesy of The Berks History Center, Reading PA, item location T 83, Vol. 1. (We added the blue highlighting to indicate the Feb. 4 entry.)

Aren’t archives (and archivists) wonderful?

Special thanks again to Kim Brown and the Berks History Center, Reading, Pennsylvania, for permission to reproduce the above image from James Morris’s diary.

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Georg Gunermann’s Time Flying

Georg Gunermann, ca. 1918 (photo # ms274_1_04_03)

Georg Gunermann, ca. 1918 (photo # ms274_1_04_03)

In August 1918, towards the very end of World War I, Georg Gunermann took pilot training at Flugwerft Schleißheim and Flugwerft Milbertshofen, not far from Munich. (Flugwerft Schleißheim was reopened to exhibit aircraft as part of the Deutsches Museum in 1992.)

Following the war, Gunermann was employed as a parachute demonstrator, Fallschrimunternehmer, and he owned a parachute company with his partner Peter Bäumler.  Gunermann and his associates performed at numerous air shows across Germany, Switzerland, and Holland throughout the 1920s and into the 1930s.  No information concerning Gunermann after 1936 has been discovered thus far.


The Georg Gunermann Collection (MS-274) consists of a single photograph album entitled “Aus meiner Fliegerzeit” (My Time Flying), containing numerous black and white photographs dating from 1918 to 1936.

Gunermann's "My Time Flying" Album, cover

Gunermann’s “My Time Flying” Album, cover

View of Gunermann's album lying open, showing a page of images from 1927.

View of Gunermann’s album lying open, showing a page of images from 1927.

For the most part, the photos depict aircraft and parachute exhibitions performed at air shows throughout Germany during the 1920s and early 1930s. Some of the photos detail Gunermann’s World War I flight training.  There are also newspaper clippings covering the various air shows, as well.

Überlandflug über dem Lech (Cross country flight over the Lech River), 1918 (photo # ms274_1_05_02)

Überlandflug über dem Lech (Cross country flight over the Lech River), 1918 (photo # ms274_1_05_02)

„Bae/Gu” - Fallschrim (Parachute) 1 - Baümler-Gunermann (photo # ms274_1_06_02)

„Bae/Gu” – Fallschrim (Parachute) 1 – Baümler-Gunermann (photo # ms274_1_06_02)

The majority of the photos are framed by descriptive captions. In the album, Gunermann identifies himself in photos with an “X” (as seen above).  Sometimes, he abbreviates his name as simply “G.”  The † symbol indicated someone who is deceased.

Georg Gunermann, ca. 1918 (photo # ms274_1_03_02)

Georg Gunermann, ca. 1918 (photo # ms274_1_03_02)

The above text was taken, with few changes, from the collection finding aid (view PDF finding aid), written by Aaron Buczkowski, July 2008. The finding aid includes a full transcription of the album’s photograph captions in the original German, with English translations.

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