Two Indiana University East students received full scholarships to attend the Preserving Historic Places statewide conference April 11-13 in Whiting, Ind. The Preserving Historic Places: Indiana’s Statewide Preservation Conference is sponsored by the Division of Historic Preservation and Archeology, Indiana University and Indiana Landmarks.
The conference provides topical sessions led by nationally-known preservationists and tours of Whiting, located near Lake Michigan, and its landmarks.
History majors Clayton Haisley of Richmond, Ind., and Jeramie Horn of Connersville, Ind., will attend the conference. Haisley, a junior, is also majoring in political science and Horn, a sophomore, has a second major in history education. They will be accompanied by Justin Carroll, assistant professor of history at IU East.
Horn plans to work for a Civil War battlefield or to teach history and to write on Colonial American History and the Civil War era.
“There are so many Civil War battlefields and landmarks that are in grave danger of being destroyed. This experience would be a great way to be proactive and do my part in helping preserve history by being more knowledgeable of the process,” Horn said. “Without historic preservation there would be no way to view history in person.”
Horn said he looks forward to the lectures from top preservation historians and learning their view on the importance of history.
“It will be a great time to network with students and professionals from around the historical community,” Horn said. “This is a great opportunity to expand my horizons and become a well-rounded student of history. There are going to be many opportunities in the three days, and they will be very busy, but an opportunity like this does not come around every day.”
Haisley said his intended field is law. He hopes to learn about the preservation of courthouses and how the early structures can be renovated to meet the demands of today including making sure that courthouses meet ADA compliance standards.
“Given my interest in the field of law, I’m really looking forward to attending this conference because one of the major subject areas has to do with the historic courthouses of Indiana. Several of the panels being offered directly address the efforts which have been made by several groups, including some in the Randolph County area, to maintain the balance between accessibility and governmental efficiency, and the maintenance of the historical heritage of such facilities,” Haisley said.
Preservation is a good way to balance the modern needs of the community with our past heritage, Haisley added.
“As society continues to advance technologically, both businesses and individual lifestyles are directly impacted by it, and in order to keep up with the ever increasing pace of modernity, it is imperative facilities remain state of the art in design and technology,” Haisley said.
“However, we must also remember and take care to preserve the historical ties which facilitate the bonds we share with past generations through important historical markers such as these courthouses. Hopefully, these panels will provide those of us attending the conference a buffet of possible solutions to this delicate problem of balancing society’s evolving needs with its heritage.”
Students were invited to submit an essay on attending the conference. A faculty panel chose two attendants from each Indiana University campus based on the essays.
Professor of History Joanne Passet is the IU East representative to the statewide committee. She said students benefit from the conference by learning historic preservation and it also provides an opportunity for college students to network with each other and public history professionals.