Forgottonia History Club: 8/31/22 Meeting #1

The purpose of this post is to provide a space for announcements, guidelines, and other information pertaining to the Forgottonia History Club hosted by Cuba High School.


  • What is a Public History Project?
    • Students will self-select a topic about the local history of Forgottonia that interests them (students will be encouraged to work in groups). They will decide the medium in which to share their project with the community (i.e., oral history interview, podcast, photography, primary source, etc.). Projects will be shared in the Western IL Museum and be featured on their program “Our Front Porch.”
    • OBJECTIVE #1 – Investigate local and regional histories deeply. 
    • OBJECTIVE #2 – Connect your own history to the larger human experience.
  • Purpose: 5 guiding questions
    • #1 – IDENTITY: What does “rural America” mean? What makes these places unique? How do we identify with them?
    • #2 – LAND: How has our attraction to & interaction with the land formed the basis of rural America/
    • #3 – COMMUNITY: How have rural communities & small towns evolved & changed?
    • #4 – MANAGING CHANGE: Changes transformed rural America (including global influences), especially during the 1900s
    • #5 – PERSISTENCE: What are some of these changes, & what have they meant for rural life? People are holding on in their rural communities? Why & how?
  • Badges & Incentives
    • #1 – MASTER of QUESTIONS BADGE (Meeting #2 & #3): Your history project ultimately begins with asking questions. What questions do you have about our local history? Earning this badge requires you to become an expert of the QFT process. Think about the questions you want to ask & topics you’d like to explore.
    • #2 – ORAL HISTORY BADGE: (Meeting #4 & #5): A popular example of a public history project is to conduct your own PODCAST interview with an informed expert (someone with knowledge or lived experience about your topic). Earn this badge by participating in a role-play interview exercise.
    • #3 – DIGITAL HISTORY BADGE: (Meeting #6 & #7): Depending on the medium you choose (i.e., interview, photography, etc.) your public history project hinges on your ability to utilize technology. Earn this badge by demonstrating your ability to be proficient in 1 or 2 technology tools related to your project (NOTE: This badge will be facilitated by CUSD #3 technology gurus).
    • #4 – CURATING HISTORY BADGE (Meeting #8-#9): Participate in a lesson/activity facilitated by guest museum directors (such as Sue Scott from the Western IL Museum) & library directors. Earn this badge by demonstrating your own ability to CURATE sources related to your own local, public history project.
    • #5 – FIELDWORK BADGE (Meeting #10): Each public history project must include 1 or more primary sources related to local history. Participate in a field trip to the Western IL University where we will visit the Archives and review materials related to your topic (i.e., microfilm/newspapers, photos, maps, etc. NOTE: To qualify for this field trip, you must attend at least 3 History Club meetings and have already determined your topic to research. Our team of archivists will have some materials relating to your topic already prepared. We will likely hang out at the university this day & have lunch at the student union center.
    • #6 – PUBLIC HISTORIAN BADGE: Earn this badge by completing & sharing your local history project. Create a poster to advertise your project & reflect on the overall process. Participate in the program “Our Front Porch” to share the motivation and process behind building the project (The focus is on the journey more than the destination).
    • Opportunities for September: Monday, September 12th, 7 pm – Dr. Hallwas will be speaking at the McDonough County Historical Society (Spoon River College Outreach Center in Macomb, IL; Directions linked)
    • 8th Annual Echoes of the Past” Cemetery Walk, Sunday, September 25
      • An outdoor history theater in which former residents of Canton are portrayed by local actors. Their stories are told in three presentations. The first at 3:30 p.m. takes place on stage in front of the Mausoleum, while the second and third, at 5 p.m. and 5:30 p.m., are at Individual sites that participants walk among in historic Greenwood Cemetery, Canton, IL. There is no charge to attend but donations are welcomed
    • Spring Plans: Host a Local History TRIVIA BOWL to raise funds to support local history

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