In January, Race Fisher ’19 copublished an article with Anna Peterson, assistant professor of history, in Vesterheim magazine. The article was the product of a summer research collaboration in which the pair researched and provided context for the Decorah-based Vesterheim Museum’s collection of drawings by Benjamin Blessum (1877–1954), a Norwegian American painter and illustrator who used political cartoons to chronicle the First World War, including the tensions and domestic turmoil that arose in Blessum’s neutral home country.
About the publication, Fisher, a double history and Nordic studies major, says, “This article means a lot to me not only for being my first published piece, which will look great on a resume, but also because Vesterheim stands as an authority on all things Norwegian American.”
Fisher, who studied abroad this semester in Bø, Norway, plans to attend graduate school and notes, “The whole process of preparing a piece for publication was an amazing learning experience for me. Professor Peterson really pushed me to synthesize the research and present it in the most effective way possible. These experiences helped me grow as a young historian.”
Fisher and Peterson have presented their research at the induction ceremony of Luther’s Phi Theta Alpha history honor society and to the local Sons of Norway chapter, and they’ve submitted it to the fall 2018 Northern Great Plains History Conference as well. Peterson says, “Race has been able to use the project to advance his understanding in many ways, to make important connections, and to form professional relationships.”
The images below are from the Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum’s collection. They were published as part of an article by Race Fisher ’19 and Anna Peterson, assistant professor of history, in the most recent issue of Vesterheim magazine. Fisher provided the captions for this article. All images courtesy of the Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum, Decorah, Iowa.