Friday, November 20, 2009

Just getting things done

Last week, we sent out the fall historical society newsletter. We wanted it to go out about one week before the Harl and Kate Dalstrom book and author program this coming Sunday afternoon at 2 in the museum. The two former Nebraska professors have written about the 1938 fire that destroyed over 7,500 acres along the Rainy River from International Falls to Roseau. Seventeen people lost their lives due to the fire. Harl will give a brief presentation entitled "Dances, Editors, Fires, and Homicide: Researching Borderland History," which will describe some of the methods of doing research which the couple have used in various projects.

On Friday, November 27 at 2 pm, a ribbon cutting ceremony will open the North Dakota Museum of Art exhibit Snow Country Prison: Interned in North Dakota. Snow Country Prison is a photograph/poetry exhibit from the North Dakota Museum of Art. It tells the story of 3,850 Japanese and German so called "enemy aliens" who were incarcerated at was Fort Lincoln in Bismarck ND. "These were not soldiers, not men of war. Rather some were German and Japanese citizens caught in the wrong place at the wrong time. Others were Americans of German and Japanese ancestry whose loyalty was question by their own government. And there were Japanese Americans, forced by the fear that their families would be split apart, who renounced their American citizenship and were subsequently locked up in Fort Lincoln to await deportation to Japan." - Laurel Reuter, Director, ND Museum of Art. The poetry is based on the Japanese Haiku poetry format. I hope the teachers who bring their students to the exhibit will have the students examine the poetry, look for the meaning and the 17 syllables within each poem.

This is the first major art exhibit RCHS has had the honor of displaying. The exhibit is hosted through a joint effort of the Roseau County Historical Society and the Roseau Public Library. The exhibit will be on display in the Trader Room of the Roseau Community Center from November 27 through December 12. I am excited to see the exhibit and have received many exciting comments from local people who are also excited to see it.

So far the composition class I’ve been taken has lead me into some very interesting areas. The second essay had to coincide with the Al Gore’s global warming documentary “An Inconvenient Truth.” I choose to talk about deforestation and was educated way beyond that. I used a variety of sources but found the United Nations Environmental Programme website’s for the Science Compendium 2009 and Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Control (IPCC) to be the most informative. It has been so enlightening and interesting that I will continue to follow what transpires with global warming.

I have the greatest admiration of the students who are in school full time; many not only take a full load work but also have to take care of their families. For me this has been a real balancing act; trying to do a good job at work, take care of home, and take just one class. I worked two nights until 2:30 am on the last exam. James commented that now I was just like the usual college student, “no sleep and late hours.”

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