Regional History Symposium 2021: Part 4

Regional History Symposium 2021: Part 4

Pikes Peak Regional History Symposium
Nice, Naughty, & Notable: Colorado Springs at 150: Part 4
Sat., Aug. 28 from 10 – 11:30 a.m.

Click here to register.

10 – 10:10 a.m.

Each presentation is scheduled for 20 minutes.
A five-minute break is scheduled between presentations.

Rick Sturdevant: Air and Space Forces in Colorado Springs: Their Bases and Memorable Characters
10:10 – 10:30 a.m.

Ever since World War II, Colorado Springs has hosted U.S. military air and, subsequently, space forces. From Peterson and Ent Air Force Bases to the U.S. Air Force Academy, Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station, and Schriever Air Force Base, the community has welcomed numerous Army Air Forces, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Space Force, and joint service organizations, plus a binational defense command. Along the way, a plethora of individuals—officers, enlisted, and civilians—came and went (some even stayed), and some became memorable. This presentation highlights a few of the latter and their legacy to Colorado Springs.

Mark James: Edwin James, Pikes Peak, and the American West
10:35 – 10:55 a.m.

This presentation will introduce my ancestor, Edwin James, a mostly obscure historical figure of United States history. As an explorer, Edwin James performed the first documented ascent of Pikes Peak. As a botanist, he is credited with discovering and naming hundreds of plants, including Colorado’s state flower, the rocky mountain blue columbine. Along with a general narrative of the life and times of Edwin in the context of American Westward expansion, I will share my personal account of climbing further Pikes Peak on July 14, 2020 to commemorate the bicentennial year of Edwin’s achievement.

Kathy Sturdevant: The Quaker Trail: Moral Infiltration, Disintegration, and Revival in the Pikes Peak Region
11 – 11:20 a.m.

Easterners populated Colorado and the Pikes Peak Region, founding towns, and determining policies during a period when the United States was fighting wars and political “polarization.” Many of those Easterners were products of moral reform and social experimentation from the Second Great Awakening. Those “awakened” folks had joined forces with Quaker social activists to fight against slavery and for racial and women’s equal rights. Contemplating westward expansion, some of them sought new utopias, some saw the American Indian as a new charge, and still others directed their passion toward disciplined business development and practices. Regardless of chosen causes and methods, they left a trail as they made their marks.

Questions and Answers
11:20 – 11:30 p.m.

Speaker Biographies

Rick W. Sturdevant joined the U.S. Air Force History & Museums Program in 1984 and became deputy director of history for Air Force Space Command in 1999, United States Space Force in 2019, and Space Operations Command since 2020. He serves on the editorial board of Quest: The History of Spaceflight Quarterly and is editor of the International Academy of Astronautics history series. Rick’s professional honors include the Air Force Exemplary Civilian Services Award (1995-1999), the American Astronautical Society (AAS) President’s Recognition Award (2005), and election as an AAS Fellow (2007).

Mark James, A photographer for almost fifty years, Mark James has served as a photojournalist, documentarian, commercial photographer, gallery owner, curator, and landscape photographer. In 1995, Mark was awarded a residency at Rocky Mountain National Park and began his present and continuing exploration of the landscape with a pinhole camera and black & white film. Since 2017, Mark has photographed Pikes Peak and the surrounding area as an ongoing study of how the Colorado wilderness landscape may have appeared two centuries ago when his ancestor, Edwin James, explored the land. Mark exhibits his photographs in museums and has a traveling exhibit organized by the Dubuque Museum of Art titled Remnants of the West: Edward Curtis and Mark James. In general, Mark’s work is rooted in both American and photographic history.

Katherine Scott Sturdevant is Pikes Peak Community College’s senior Professor of History. Her specialties include Colorado, women, American Indians, the West, and family history. She works with many local and national historical organizations. With PPLD Special Collections, she presented, published chapters, and/or served as a volume editor for many of PPLD’s annual symposia proceedings since they began. Kathy has authored two books and many scholarly articles. Federally trained in historical editing, she served on several scholarly journals. She is an advocate of diversity, equity, and inclusion. As a social historian, Kathy brings human interest and humor to presentations.

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