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Like most of the 12 women sent to Leavenworth, Mary was transferred to the Kansas State Penitentiary at Lansing, Kansas, because the federal penitentiary had no facilities for women. Otherwise she would have served her full sentence and been freed in December In she married James Brice, an African American man 12 years her senior.

Featured photo: Mary Snowden, Leavenworth inmate photo, Collection of the National Archives. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account.

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You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. On the drive, Prof.

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And after today everyone seems to be reeling from the historical misrepresentation of Texas history. Right now, at this very moment, we are at the one week mark, including our acclimation days, and emotions are running high.

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There have been some amazing experiences thus far on our journey. I have laughed until tears ran down my face, and I have cried like a baby. There are so many emotions on this bus right now.

There is so much pain and joy. People are excited and frightened to learn more. And here at the Alamo all of those feelings and so much more were represented. The Alamo, maybe more than any place that we have gone, was portrayed as a celebration. Yet this celebration was one that many if not all on our journey were unable to partake in, because the Alamo as it is presented now is a celebration of empire, nation, whiteness, and masculinity.


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It is unfortunate that the museum focuses on the celebratory aspects of the Alamo, rather than the complexity of the actual history. One of the individuals on the trip, a Texan and African American, mentioned that it reminded her of seventh grade Texas history, and of being written and remembered out of that history.

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Together our class and descendants of some of the original makers of Texas learned how the slaves of the Jordan plantation were able to retain their culture and enrich their lives in the midst of the sadistic avarice of Levi Jordan and his descendants. There was so much hope there. As in the woods at the plantation, we witnessed the way that individuals make claims to their lives and infuse them with optimism and joy in the face of struggles.

As aspiring historians, there have been many times when all of us have felt irrelevant. Today, however, when we witness the profound and purposeful ignorance of a site like the Alamo, we can become inspired to change this injustice. We visited the site commemorating the signing of the Chimazal Treaty of , which redrew the boundary near El Paso. But what is astonishing about being right on the actual border is that South El Paso is also a poor part of town just like North Juarez. Are they from the U. The big question for us is, what is the relationship between this seemingly arbitrary border and history?

Individuals who shaped the complex history of what we now call the borderlands. Yet today, we do not read about the violent conquest of the Southwest in our history books or museums. During debates over immigration, we do not sufficiently address the complicated ties between Mexico and the U. And people continue to discriminate against others who have historically inhabited the border region before the U. The border crossed them, they did not cross the border. On the way, we ate lunch at a casino in the Isleta Pueblo and, afterwards, met with Ramona Montoya, a graduate student in land resources at UW-Madison.

Ramona showed us parts of Isleta, and she lectured about some of the environmental issues that the Pueblo is dealing with, such as hazardous waste sites, water management, and Formerly Used Defense Sites FUDS. After Isleta, we drove to Santa Fe, where we met one more member of our teaching team, Prof. Camille Guerin-Gonzales. At all of the museums on the hill, the exhibits were not confined to the past.

Artisans like Ray Baca were actually in the museum practicing the craft that was behind the plexiglass displays. Charles Loloma was the featured artist at the Wheelwright, and his jewelry straddled the traditional and the modern.

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By blending non-native materials and modern designs with traditional Hopi symbols and styles, Loloma challenged images of Indian culture as static and unchanging. He also presented his initial efforts in developing a new web site — www. His vision of public history stood in stark contrast with other sites. His work stressed the complexity and violence of the past. He also emphasized what was hidden in the shop windows and monuments of downtown Santa Fe: the cultural hybridity of New Mexico. He envisions a new public history that does not conform to linear chronologies and questions the presentations of cultural purity in the state.

The task is not simple; he must balance his statutory responsibility to protect the past with the pressures of development that threaten it. The evening following our day at Museum Hill proved to be inspiring. Unlike previous dinners in New Mexico, this one was more intimate. Praised as the Pablo Neruda of our day, Baca engaged us with stories about his life in prison, which have been portrayed in the movie Blood In Blood Out. Recounting his personal biography, he described how he became a poet during his incarceration, drawing on language to make sense of the world around him.


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His talk expressed his belief in the power of language to transform lives. Echoing our visit to the Cherokee Nation, Baca connected language to culture, showing in a few precious words what this journey is about: reclaiming history to create social change and the importance of building ties across racial lines. History is all around us — in our actions, communities, and personal relationships. In his words and in his work, the past moves; it creates change in real people and real places.

Is it Yahweh, Allah or a Big Bang? How did this space come to be? Trees grow on mountain tops in the distance.

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Rocks made of sand form mountains. I must give thanks. Please accept my gift. I remember now. Touching the stream I bring my ancestors near. Their spirits coalesce in my soul. The air leaves my lungs as I exhale. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.