In this course, students collaboratively designed, pitched, constructed, and publicly disseminated digital group projects based on materials from the Ursinusiana Archive. During the semester, guest speakers shared their own experience with digital/public history and provided feedback on the students’ work in progress. Projects were launched at the end of the Fall 2016 semester and ultimately will be part of the College’s 2019-2020 sesquicentennial celebrations.
Amy Litofsky, Chase Outcault, Michael Raasch, and Carlo Telesco
This project researches smoking advertisements that appeared in the Ursinus College newspaper (The Weekly and the Grizzly) and the Lantern literary magazine. We focus exclusively on the 1940s and 1980s, investigating the contrasts between these two decades. Our goal is to understand the extent to which cigarette ads changed in Ursinus publications over these years while examining the context of the social trends and advancements of the time periods.
Hunter Brown, Collin Fazziola, Collin Mason, and Kyle Rubino
The Ursinus College campus used to be brimming with fraternities. Today, only a few remain. Through primary source research on specific fraternities via Ruby yearbooks and Grizzly newspaper articles, we seek to find out why these organizations seem to be gradually disappearing from campus. We will also look at national trends and examine the warning signs that started to appear in the 1980s which placed the traditional fraternity (exclusively male membership with rushing, pledging and hazing processes) under intense scrutiny.
Sophia DiBattista, Katie Hudick, and Joseph Makuc
The Curtain Club was Ursinus' student theater organization that definitively originated in 1930, but it disappeared in 1968. During the same year, the club changed its name to "ProTheatre." By analyzing past articles from the Ursinus Weekly, Ruby yearbooks, diversity ratios among students, performances, and campus trends from the 1950s until 1968, we demonstrate that the name signifies Ursinus' focus on the transition into a more inclusive and democratic environment. Reorganizing the "Curtain Club" into "ProTheatre" signifies Ursinus' shift into being "pro-change."
Bears With Booze: A History of the Creation, Enforcement and Reformation of Alcohol Policies at Ursinus College
Daniel Berger, Kasey Chatburn, Samuel Mamber, and Alessandra Psomaras
A student-created and organized digital exhibit archiving the history of Ursinus College's tumultuous relationship with alcohol laws, customs, and culture.
Giselle Horrell, Leah Jarvis, and Catherine Urbanski
‘Myths and Legends of Ursinus’ is a project aimed at answering questions about how urban legends can characterize a specific location. Focusing on how the mythology came about, which stories still remain, and what they mean for the current Ursinus campus, we have explored the radioactivity labs of Pfahler, the vanishing Vietnam Peace Tree, and the many ghost stories that are still a part of campus life. Articles from The Grizzly and The Weekly, college catalogues, the college bulletin, physical site visits, and in-person interviews have helped us to create this exhibit, which introduces different ways of perceiving locations, includes analysis of the three subtopics from each team member, and provides a synthesis of ideas to answer the final question of why such legends are still relevant today.
No More "Blue Skies": Social Life, Politics and Finances on the Ursinus College Campus During the 1920s and 1930s
Colleen Becker, Harrison Cade, Carl Christoph, and William Peiffer
This project focuses on the history of Ursinus College during the 1920s and the early 1930s; aimed at showing how the student body reacted and responded to the sudden shift from the exuberance and wealth that defined the Roaring Twenties to the extreme poverty and immense misery that came to define the Great Depression.
Thomas Bantley, Mya D. Flood, Chloe Sheraden, and Paige Szmodis
This digital history project records the inclusion of marginalized groups within Ursinus College Greek life from the 1970s to present day. During this time frame, values of diversity and inclusion began to gain momentum on a national scale with the civil rights and feminist movements. Our research seeks to understand how Ursinus was affected by and responded to the national discourse on diversity and Greek life.
Christopher Barthold, Matthew Sherman, and Kayla Weil
Presidents are memorable figures in history, usually evoking change and progress during their term. This project details the lives and accomplishments of a select group of Ursinus College presidents who impacted and shaped the campus: John H.A. Bomberger, George L. Omwake, Richard P. Richter and John Strassburger.
Lauren T. Geiger and Jordan Ostrum
Our exhibit examines the history of the Gender Sexuality Alliance (formerly known as GALA) at Ursinus College, (located in southeastern Pennsylvania) from 1991 to 2000. Join us as we examine the discussions about, representations of, and controversies surrounding the formation and first ten years of the GSA, as seen in articles published in the school newspaper, The Grizzly. Our project asks the question: "How did the GSA handle conflict and controversies in its first ten years of existence?"
Shelby Bryant, Morgan Kentsbeer, Breanna Knisely-Durham, Morgan Larese, and Rachel Zane
Breaking Ground: A History of Construction, Destruction, and Renovation at Ursinus College aims to educate the public about the history of Ursinus buildings. The group decided to pick three buildings that are personally connected to our lives on campus. The three buildings are currently known as Myrin Library, Bomberger Memorial Hall and the Berman Museum of Art. The project is just the initial step in creating a full history of the buildings on campus. Although each building was built at a different time in the college’s history, two major dates of renovation have emerged through our research, the 1970s and the mid 2000s.
Tiffini Eckenrod, Liam Griffin, Jon Kishpaugh, and David O'Neil
Events that affect our country as a whole tend to be viewed solely on a national scale. Our project aims to bring that focus down to a local level as we have been looking at how Pearl Harbor and September 11, 2001 have resulted in changes on campus and how the two events compare in Ursinus’ memory. This focus has given us greater insight concerning how the Ursinus community reacts to tragedies and will help us in answering our question. Through our research, we have a better idea of how Ursinus reacts to tragedy. We have been looking at both the immediate aftermath of the attacks and what people were saying years later.
The main sources we will be using to address the question are the Grizzlys, the Weeklies, Rubies, memoir writings from the 1998 reunion mural dedication and physical objects saved from memorials.