The inaugural event featured 19 student presenters who participated in eight separate panels, moderated by faculty members in UHD’s Department of History, Humanities, & Languages, followed by Q&A sessions. The student presenters hailed from University of Houston-Downtown, University of Houston-Clear Lake, and Sam Houston State University. Student presentations reflected diverse interests.
A scholar of Texas working-class history and one of the founders of the state’s Labor Archives, Dr. George N. Green, kicked off the event with his keynote address, “The 1885 Galveston General Strike: The Struggle for Biracial Equity on the Waterfront.” Green detailed the story of white and black workers’ struggles to control their wages and working conditions on Galveston’s docks, which included racially segregated work-sharing plans and a mass strike and boycott.
The interdisciplinary conference drew 119 attendees, including Sam Houston State University professor of history Dr. Ty Cashion.
The “Best Paper” award went to UHD senior Marlayna Revear. Her paper, “Jamaican Manumission, 1724-1757,” analyzed manumission data and other records in order to understand why certain masters in a brutally exploitative slave society freed certain enslaved people during the mid-eighteenth century.
Conference organizer and associate professor of history, Dr. Theresa Case, noted, “This kind of event energizes all of us, because it involves the exercise of talents that are fundamental to higher education and to modern life in general—the ability to pose a good question, research ideas and evidence important to the question, and communicate clearly and compellingly, in oral and written form, one’s findings and argument.”
This interdisciplinary conference was supported by funds from the Cultural Enrichment Center, the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, and the Department of History, Humanities, & Languages.