About Brian Mann

Assistant Professor of History at Eastern Illinois University

History Graduate Student Wins 2014 King-Mertz Award

Nichole Garbrough (MA 2014) was recently selected by the EIU Graduate School to receive the prestigious King-Mertz Distinguished Research/Creative Activity Award for her Independent Study project “Delaware Valley Allegiances and Identity in the Eighteenth Century” done under the supervision of Dr. Charles Foy.  This paper addressed the question of how and when residents of British North American changed their identities from being British to being American. Through a careful and detailed analysis of identity Nichole demonstrated Delaware’s unique history among the thirteen colonies and at the same time confirmed that its diversity and lacking a monolithic religious community or mono-crop economy were more typical of colonial America than Massachusetts or Virginia, colonies which most historians have focused their attention.

Nichole’s research for this project was done while taking Dr. Newton Key’s Early Modern England and Dr. Foy’s Early America seminars.

EIU History Club’s 1st Annual Trivia Night

The EIU History Club recently held its 1st Annual Trivia Night fundraiser. All proceeds from the event went directly to History Club and will be used for putting on future events. During the night, teams consisting of students and faculty from across campus competed against each other for prizes – with prizes awarded to the top two teams at the end of the competition. The questions might have been hard, but the pizza and good times were plentiful! The EIU History Club wants to thank everyone who turned out for the event and helping make our 1st trivia night such a success!

Congratulations to our first place team!:

Our 1st Place Team relishing  their victory!

And congratulations to our second place team!:

Our 2nd Place Team

 

2014-04-04 11.28.20

History Students Present Research at Booth Library Event

As a part of Booth Library’s ongoing Muslim Journey’s programming, four history students recently presented their research on various topics in Islamic History to a public audience . After presenting their research to a group which included EIU faculty, staff, students, and members of the Charleston community, the students then fielded questions during an informative discussion session. The panel was organized and moderated by Professor Brian Mann for whom the four students carried out their research projects in the F13 semester. The four presenters and their respective research projects were:

  • First year History MA student Adam Mohebbi, who discussed his research on martyrdom during the First Gulf War
  • Junior history major Taylor Yangas, who presented her research on women and women’s rights in early Islamic societies,
  • Senior history major Grant Watts, who discussed his research on the Arabs’ use of jihad during the Mongol conquests,
  • Senior history major John Proffitt, who presented his research on early Byzantine-Arab relations.

Congratulations to our four students on giving such fantastic and informative presentations!

From left to right: Jack Proffitt, Prof. Brian Mann, Grant Watts, Adam Mohebbi, Taylor Yangas (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

From left to right: Jack Proffitt, Prof. Brian Mann, Grant Watts, Adam Mohebbi, Taylor Yangas (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Adam Mohebbi provides the audience with some background to the First Gulf War

Adam Mohebbi provides the audience with some clarifications on the First Gulf War and the tactics used by the Islamic Republic of Iran (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Taylor Yangas discusses how the rise of Islam altered the status of women in Arabian society (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Taylor Yangas discusses how the rise of Islam altered the status of women in Arabian society (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Grant Watts explains the significance of the Mongol invasion on the Abbasid Caliphate (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Grant Watts explains how the emergence of the Mongols drastically altered the history of the Arab world  (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Jack Proffitt offers an explanation as to why the Arabs were able to quickly and effectively conquer Byzantine territory (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Jack Proffitt offers an explanation as to why the Arabs were able to quickly and effectively conquer Byzantine territory (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Ms. Yangas and Mr. Mohebbi field questions from the audience (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Ms. Yangas and Mr. Mohebbi field questions from the audience (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

 

 

Muslim Journeys Events at Booth Library

This semester Booth Library has hosted many events as part of its ongoing program Muslim Journeys, a project of the National Endowment for the Humanities, conducted in cooperation with the American Library Association and the Ali Vural Ak Center for Global Islamic Studies at George Mason University. As the project scholar for Muslim Journeys series here at EIU, Professor Brian Mann participated in many of these events.  He delivered the keynote address at the series’ opening reception, gave public lectures on and led discussions of books about Islam and Islamic history,  and organized a research panel at which four EIU history majors presented their scholarship on the history of the Islamic World (blog post on this event coming soon!).

Prof. Mann delivers the keynote talk (Islam and the Monotheistic Tradition) at the opening reception in January (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Prof. Mann delivers the keynote talk “Islam and the Monotheistic Tradition” at the opening reception in January (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

 

EIU faculty, staff, and students, members Charleston community, and Prof. Mann discuss Muhammad: A Very Short Introduction by Jonathan Brown (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

EIU faculty, staff, students and members of the Charleston community discuss Muhammad: A Very Short Introduction by Jonathan Brown (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Professor Mann delivers a lecture on the origins of Islam in February (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

In February, Professor Mann delivers a lecture on pre-Islamic Arabia and the origins of Islam (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

In March, members of the EIU and Charleston community discuss The Art of Hajj by Vanessa Porter (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

In March, members of the EIU and Charleston community discuss The Art of Hajj by Vanessa Porter (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Prof. Mann talks with members of the audience about the historical and religious significance of various Hajj rituals (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

Prof. Mann talks with members of the audience about the historical and religious significance of various Hajj rituals (photo courtesy of Booth Library)

While many of the Muslim Journeys events have already taken place, there is still time to take part in this innovative and informative series! There are three more Muslim Journeys events taking place in the coming weeks:

Tuesday, April 1, 7 p.m., Newman Center
Interfaith panel, moderated by Daniel Otto, Instructor of Philosophy
Panelists: Ms. Carly Froomkin Burak, Mr. Roy Lanham, Professor Jyoti Panjwani, Professor Jaysinha Shinde and Professor Duangrudi Suksang

Wednesday, April 9, 5:30 p.m., Witters Conference Room 4440, Booth Library
Book discussion, A Rumi Anthology, led by Dr. Jaysinha Shinde, Assistant Professor of Business

Tuesday, April 15, 7 p.m., Witters Conference Room 4440, Booth Library
Panel discussion, Women in Veil, moderated by Dr. Bonnie Irwin, Dean, College of Arts and Humanities. Panelists: Reham Hamdy Abou-Zaid, Huma Malik, Shannon Mavi

 

 

 

EIU History Club Visits St. Louis

The EIU History Club recently visited a number of historical sites and museums in the St. Louis area. Some of the places visited were the Lewis and Clark State Historic Site in Hartford, IL, the Elijah Lovejoy Monument and Alton National Cemetery in Alton, IL, the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial in St. Louis, and the Museum of Westward Expansion located underneath the Gateway Arch. The group also enjoyed some delicious Ethiopian food for lunch and some tasty gelato for desert!

Visiting the fort at Camp Dubois (the winter camp for the Lewis & Clark Expedition in the winter of 1803)

Visiting the fort at Camp Dubois (the winter camp for the Lewis & Clark Expedition in the winter of 1803)

Touring the fort at Camp Dubois

Touring the fort at Camp Dubois

Visiting the exhibits at the Lewis & Clark State Historic Site Visitors Center

Visiting the exhibits at the Lewis & Clark State Historic Site Visitors Center

Examining a replica of one of the boats used by the Lewis & Clark Expedition

Examining a replica of one of the boats used by the Lewis & Clark Expedition

Lunch at Meskerem Ethiopian Restaurant in St. Louis

Lunch at Meskerem Ethiopian Restaurant in St. Louis

Touring the Museum of Westward Expansion

Touring the Museum of Westward Expansion

Historical Administration Graduate Program Exhibit Begins April 12

TEXT & TEXTILES
CRAFTING THE LIVES OF GUY & IRENE BUZZARD

HAabout

“This generation is just too busy to pay much attention to family. Perhaps that’s why I am working to complete genealogies so they will at least know each other on paper… and who knows what the threads of fate will do in making paths cross.”

Eastern’s third presidential family is back in a new textile exhibition entitled Text and Textiles: Crafting the Lives of Guy and Irene Buzzard. From April 12th to June 29th, 2014 the exhibit will be in the e-Gallery at the Tarble Arts Center. This exhibit is produced by the Tarble Arts Center in connection with the 2014 EIU Historical Administration program and graduate students.

Texts and Textiles focuses on the lives of Robert Guy Buzzard and Irene Couchman Buzzard, exploring the ways in which they crafted their lives together for over fifty years. Irene and Guy Buzzard shared a passion for handicrafts and textile arts. The objects they collected and produced also reflect many of the great changes of the twentieth century. The exhibit highlights both the text and textile aspects of this remarkable family, drawing on materials from the Buzzard Textile Collection within the Tarble Arts Center and from the EIU Archives in Booth Library. Follow the exhibit’s progress at the following:
Website: http://www.eiu.edu/ha/exhibits/2014/home.html
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Textandtextiles2014
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/buzzard2014
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/textandtextiles/
Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtWOFohjb8IrKGlpBGhoXlg

Dr. Young and Dr. Reid Awarded President’s Fund for Research and Creative Activity Grant

Dr. Bailey K. Young and Dr. Debra A. Reid have been awarded a PFRCA grant to support their collaborative project, “Walhain: Landscape of Domination. The Origins and Transformations of a  Medieval Lordship,”  which will expand the Walhain archaeological site into a major site for investigation into agrarian and rural history.

walhain

Dr. Bailey Young has managed an international project to document an early medieval farming estate on the south side of Walhain-Saint-Paul, Belgium since 1998. The project has involved 110 undergraduate and 8 graduate students from 62 universities, including 12 undergraduate and 6 graduate students from EIU, over these years. These students have worked on excavations led by faculty from at least four universities, but Dr. Bailey Young has provided intellectual direction as well as instruction to students through study abroad experiences for all 15 years. The international partnership has allowed students unique opportunities to engage with faculty through archaeological field work, artifact stabilization and documentation through lab work, coursework in medieval history and culture, and research into written evidence of the early middle ages. The project has continued due to Dr. Young’s commitment, diversified fundraising, and international networks, all critical to sustaining the project.

The Walhain Project, since its inception in 1998, has pursued two linked goals: to provide a unique, interdisciplinary study abroad experience in medieval archaeology, and to conduct an innovative international research program centered on the excavation of Walhain Castle (near Louvain-la-Neuve, Brabant Wallon).  It has been largely financed, through 2012, through the fees paid by the American students signed up for the Summer Archaeology Program in Belgium, administered by the School of Continuing Education at
Eastern Illinois University (EIU).  The Centre de Recherches d’Archéologie Nationale (CRAN), based at the Université Catholique de Louvain (UCL) in Louvain-la-Neuve, our principal partner in this project, has contributed its infra-structure, expertise, and personnel to make the four-week excavation which is at the heart of the academic program possible. UCL students have also worked regularly alongside the American students, further enriching the Study Abroad experience.

WSP_Team_2010 (2)

The 2014 study abroad experience marks an expansion in goals that will enhance the site’s prestige by showcasing evidence of agriculture as practiced by the pre-modern peasants on an early lordship. It will also build on the local initiative to protect the property with a feasibility study to launch an interpretive center and institute to study pre-modern
agriculture.

The European Rural History Organization (Eur-Ho) began in 2010, dedicated to European rural and agricultural history. The second conference, convened in Bern, Switzerland in September 2013, provided a forum for medieval scholars to converse about diverse definitions of the uneven origins of lordships in the middle ages, and the factors that affected the ways lords and other religious or political units administered the landscape that fed the population. Dr. Reid has been involved in this organization from the beginning, and the board has selected Louvain, Belgium, as the site of the 2017 meeting. This will be the perfect opportunity to feature the by then twenty-year international partnership that preserved, documented, and interpreted what is a relatively rare early medieval site. This conference will provide the opportunity to engage in an international dialog about the history of food and politics, the consequences to the landscape and environment, and to the evolution of agricultural markets and market systems over time

Booth Library to Host the ISHS History Symposium

EIU’s Booth Library will host the Illinois State Historical Society’s 2014 History Symposium on March 27-28. The symposium is co-sponsored by the History Department, Booth Library, the Coles County Historical Society, and the Illinois State Genealogical Society. The symposium commemorates the sesquicentennial anniversary of the Civil War, and specifically, the infamous Charleston “copperhead” riot of March 28, 1864.

IL_history_web4

Several students and professors from the History Department are participating as speakers. Visit the Illinois State Historical Society  website and click on “2014 Illinois History Symposium” for details. The best part? Registration is free for EIU students!

EIU Students Do Living History for Women’s History and Awareness Month

Each year the Living History Program, sponsored by EIU’s Women’s Studies Program, recruits students to portray women in history at local elementary schools during Women’s History and Awareness Month in March. On February 26, four EIU students partook in The Living History Premier Presentation, an event open to the public, at the Charleston Carnegie Public Library.  For more information about the Living History program, please visit the Women’s Studies Program’s website.  You also can read about this year’s Living History Premier Presentation over at the the Journal Gazette & Times-Courier, and find more information about this year’s Women’s History and Awareness Month at the Women’s Studies’ WHAM page.

From left to right: Cayla Wagner, Ashley Samoska, Taylor Yangas, Amy Wywialowski

From left to right: Cayla Wagner, Ashley Samoska, Taylor Yangas, Amy Wywialowski

EIU History major, Cayla Wagner, portrays Genevieve (Audrey) Wagner. Audrey Wagner was an all-star outfielder in the  All-American Girls Professional Baseball League.

EIU History major Cayla Wagner portrays Genevieve (Audrey) Wagner. Audrey Wagner was an all-star outfielder in the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League.

EIU English major Ashley Samoska portrays portrays rock legend Joan Jett.

EIU English major Ashley Samoska portrays portrays rock legend Joan Jett. The feminist icon is well known for her 1982 #1 hit “I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll”.

EIU HIstory major Taylor Yangas portrays Irena Sendler. Sendler, a Polish nurse, smuggled more than 2,500 Jewish children out of the Warsaw Ghetto to safety during the Holocaust.

EIU HIstory major Taylor Yangas portrays Polish nurse and activist Irena Sendler. Here, Yangas explains how Sendler smuggled more than 2,500 Jewish children out of the Warsaw Ghetto during the Holocaust.

EIU History major Amy Wywialowski portrays Juliette Gordon Low, the founder of the Girl Scouts of the USA.

EIU History major Amy Wywialowski portrays Juliette Gordon Low, the founder of the Girl Scouts of the USA.

2014 History Careers Day

The History Department hosted its annual History Careers Day on Friday, February 21. The event featured students, faculty, staff and alumni talking about internships, graduate school, grants and fellowships, professional history work and all kinds of other career advice.

Many members of the EIU community (students, faculty, staff, and alumni) came for all or part of the event.

Many members of the EIU community (students, faculty, staff, and alumni) came for all or part of the event.

Dr. Sace Elder, Chair of the History Careers Day Committee introduces our first panel of the day

Dr. Sace Elder, Chair of the History Careers Day Committee introduces our first panel of the day

(from back to front) Dr. Charles Foy, Dr. Ed Wehrle and Dr. Sace Elder discuss internship and fellowship opportunities--very important in today's job market!

Dr. Charles Foy (center), Dr. Ed Wehrle (back) and Dr. Sace Elder (front) discuss internship and fellowship opportunities–very important in today’s job market!

Undergraduate student Amy Wywialowski (left) and graduate student Stephanie Templin (right) describe their public history internships

Undergraduate student Amy Wywialowski (left) and graduate student Stephanie Templin (right) describe their public history internships

(from left to right) Dr. Bonnie Laughlin-Schultz, Dr. Lee Patterson, and Dr. Mark Hubbard talk about their research

(from left to right) Dr. Bonnie Laughlin-Schultz, Dr. Lee Patterson, and Dr. Mark Hubbard talk about their research.

Our keynote speaker, EIU History alum and Director of Field Services for the Illinois Association of School Boards, Dr. Patrick Rice, on the importance of school boards

Our keynote speaker, EIU History alum and Director of Field Services for the Illinois Association of School Boards, Dr. Patrick Rice, on the importance of school boards.

Dr. Newton Key (left) listens to EIU Career Counselor Bobbi Kingery (right) taking about the strong job skills that a history degree provides: research, writing, and analytical thinking, just for starters!

Dr. Newton Key (left) listens to EIU Career Counselor Bobbi Kingery (center) talk about the strong job skills that a history degree provides: research, writing, and analytical skills, just for starters.

Dr. Patrick Rice (left) with Chris Carron  (right), Director of Collections at the Children's Museum of Indianapolis and alum of Eastern Illinois University's Historical Administration Program

Dr. Patrick Rice (left) with Chris Carron (right), Director of Collections at the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis and alum of Eastern Illinois University’s Historical Administration Program

Crystal Abbey, M.A. alum who is now at the Vermont Law School was able to join us via Skype. Here she poses with two of her grad professors: Dr. Elder (left) and Dr. Key (right). Crystal's advice? "Get an M.A. in History from EIU!"

Crystal Abbey, M.A. alum who is now at the Vermont Law School, was able to join us via Skype. Here she poses with two of her grad professors: Dr. Elder (left) and Dr. Key (right). Crystal’s advice? “Get an M.A. in History from EIU!”