quindaro_call_for_papers_2016Quindaro: The Intersection of Abolitionist Politics, Freed Blacks, and a Flourishing Community
Proposed Symposium Date: Fall 2017
Contact: Liz Hobson, Education & Interpretation Manger, Freedom’s Frontier National Heritage Area

The historical significance of the townsite of Quindaro, Kansas, is an established but growing topic thanks to the diligent work of enthusiasts and the site’s listing on the National Register of Historic Places.  The history of the community is essential to the telling of the larger national story of abolitionist and antislavery politics in the Civil War era, race relations, women’s suffrage, native peoples, the Civil War in the West, and other significant stories of our nation. This symposium will contribute to the process of designating the ruins of Quindaro as a National Historic Landmark that will encourage new research, bring this scholarship to a broader public audience, and facilitate discussions about the future of the Quindaro site.

Purpose: Exploring the multi-faceted historical significance of Quindaro, Kansas.

Research and papers will be presented through panel sessions and workshops at a weekend long symposium in Kansas City. The papers sought are intended to be included in a published edited volume. The papers will also be included in a website that combines all presented scholarship and will serve as an online repository of primary sources related to Quindaro

Suggested themes and topics that may be addressed in the papers include, but are not limited to:

  • The pivotal role of Quindaro as a port for Free Staters entering Kansas
  • Meaning of “abolitionist,” “free state,” and “free labor” in the context of pre-Civil War Kansas
  • How the role of state-sovereignty was defined
  • Quindaro as an intersection of American culture
  • What role did Kansas and Missouri play in the development of the Civil War?
  • How should we commemorate Quindaro?
  • Historic Quindaro Western University
  • The Underground Railroad
  • Native Americans
  • Women’s Suffrage
  • Land Speculation

This symposium welcomes submissions from:

  • Professional Scholars
  • Researchers and Public Historians
  • Authors
  • Community Members
  • Descendants of Quindaro citizens
  • Students

Submission Details:
Deadline: November 14, 2016
Format: A one-page abstract with working title; C.V. or resume

Contact/Submission Instructions: Please address proposals and inquiries to:
Liz Hobson
Education & Interpretation Manger
Freedom’s Frontier National Heritage Area
P.O. Box 526
Lawrence, KS 66044

CALL FOR PAPERS: The Great Plains

greatplains-CFPThe Great Plains: An Environmental History
Workshop: May 22-25, 2017
Kathleen A. Brosnan and Brian Frehner, Principal Investigators and Editors

We solicit papers for a National-Science-Foundation-funded, interdisciplinary workshop that explores the environmental history of the North American Great Plains from western Texas to southern Canada. Qualified papers from the workshop will be included in a volume edited by Kathleen A. Brosnan (University of Oklahoma) and Brian Frehner (University of Missouri – Kansas City) and published by the University of Oklahoma Press.

We seek papers that collectively contribute to a redefinition of the region and its environmental history by exploring how technological adaptations, rather than disasters such as the Dust Bowl, have shaped the history of this environment and the people who inhabited it. Submissions should ideally move beyond decline and exploitation as defining ecological narratives of the region and examine the Great Plains by emphasizing one or more of the interrelated themes of water, grasses, animals, and energy. Moreover, technological adaptations can be defined in the broadest sense. We particularly encourage proposals that emphasize the longstanding role of native people in shaping environments throughout the region.

Travel and lodging expenses, as well as most meals, will be provided for workshop participants. The workshop will take place at various Oklahoma locations from May 22-25, 2017. In addition to the papers sessions, the workshop tentatively includes introductions to archival and museum resources at the University of Oklahoma in Norman; travel to Stillwater to observe grasslands management strategies such as prescribed burning; a visit to the Osage Tribal Museum in Pawhuska; and travel to the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve to witness the effects of patch burning and to see bison in their native habitat.

The selected participants will join a group of scholars who have already committed to this project including Clint Carroll, Michael Lansing, Mark Palmer, Jonathan Peyton, Molly P. Rozum, Natale “Nat” Zappia, and María Nieves Zedeño.

Penultimate drafts of the papers will be due one month in advance of the workshop. We also plan to podcast the workshop live to high school students and will ask participants to share, in advance of the workshop, sample primary documents for a website for those students.

Please submit a 300-500-word paper proposal no later than September 30 to Kathleen Brosnan ( and Brian Frehner (

For additional information, please go to