Good morning, friends. Although I didn’t make it to the Fifteenth Berkshire Conference on the History of Women, my faithful reporter Classy Claude did. (Does this guy get around, or what? Some of you may remember Claude’s other reports of recent AHA and OAH meetings.)
I’m back! In light of Historiann’s absence from the Berks – and needless to say, she was missed by many – her faithful conference reporter Classy Claude is happy to offer readers a snapshot of one conference-goer’s experience. Obviously a conference is different for different people, depending on sessions attended and so forth, but I will recount some highlights.
This Berks quite literally got off to start with a bang. There was a crazy thunderous storm on Thursday afternoon (hail in some places!) as the first sessions were getting underway, as many attendees were taking advantage of tours through local historical sites, and as Classy Claude was doing a little work at the Sophia Smith Collection at nearby Smith College. All of these opportunities had been coordinated with, or organized by, the conference planners. Thus, one real highlight of the conference was the opportunity to take advantage of these nearby historic sites and local archives.
The conference was located on the UMass-Amherst campus, primarily in the Campus Center, which itself houses a hotel (where many of us stayed, though rumor has it that rooms booked up quickly) and was connected via various passageways to the Student Union and a parking garage. Because the weather was rainy on a couple days (Saturday also), this had the effect of making sessions not in the central complex more sparsely attended. I found this to be so in a session I chaired and one I attended about young women and premarital pregnancy (which included Historiann’s blogging pal, Knitting Clio). Continue Reading »