September 25, 2023

Bringing War Home Partners with Utah Historical Society on 'Peoples of Utah Revisited'

USU students connct with veterans at a Bringing War Home roadshow
USU student talks with a Cold War veteran at the Hyrum City Museum BWH Roadshow event on April 9, 2022. (Photo credit: Molly Cannon) 

In collaboration with the Utah Historical Society, USU’s Bringing War Home project invites the public to a community event to share family histories on Saturday, Sept. 30 at the Engagement Room in Midvale, Utah.

The Utah Historical Society and the Bringing War Home project are collaborating to preserve and share historical materials that represent one’s past, family, and community. These materials may include objects, mementos, artifacts; photographs of people, places, buildings, landscapes, and events; diaries, journals, letters, news clippings, memoirs; oral histories, oral traditions, family stories; art, poetry, music, recipes, tools, and/or objects.

Once documented, these records will be housed with USU Libraries and the Utah Historical Society’s Peoples of Utah Revisited online collection.

Event organizers are particularly interested in documenting object stories centered on America’s modern wars. According to the Bringing War Home project, many are familiar with wartime souvenirs, whether or not they have direct experience with the battlefield.

According to the Bringing War Home website, “Some of these objects are personal, a way for veterans to preserve their experiences. Often, we treasure objects from relatives who have participated in the wars of the 20th century; special things linger on as memorials that help families tell the stories of how beloved fathers, grandfathers, mothers and grandmothers, cousins, and siblings contributed to the larger history of war.”

Funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and led by two faculty members from USU specializing in history and anthropology, the Bringing War Home project invites military and civilian members of the community to connect with the history of war by sharing wartime objects and the personal stories associated with them.

The Sept. 30th event invites the public to bring wartime objects to the Engagement Room at 7292 S. State St. from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Trained experts will scan the original item, make a digital copy, and return the original to attendees. They also welcome digital files, including copies of digital photos or documents stored on phones or digital cameras.

Above all, they are eager to collect the stories accompanying these materials. Thus, students and volunteers will record interviews about lives, experiences, and family stories, as well as recording oral traditions.

“Such public history preserved in a digital archive enables students, educators, and future generations to learn about our shared past,” said Molly Cannon, one of the faculty members overseeing the Bringing War Home project.

For more information about this free event, please visit https://www.usu.edu/mountainwest/bringing-war-home and https://www.veterans.utah.gov/event/bringing-war-home-roadshow/

The community is also invited to record an oral history account of their objects with UPR here: https://www.upr.org/.

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