Michigan Tech Archives Awards Travel Grants

The Michigan Tech Archives is pleased to announce three recipients of

awards in its travel grant program. Funding for the program is provided by the Friends of the Van Pelt Library, and encourages out-of-town scholars to visit Houghton to undertake research using the collections of the Michigan Tech Archives.

Aaron Goings, a professor at Saint Martin’s University in Washington

State, will visit campus in August to continue his research into aspects of the 1913 Michigan Copper Miners’ Strike. Goings has particular interest in working-class organization and activism in the region and argues that labor unrest in 1913 was the product of decades of class-based activity by Copper Country workers. The travel award will allow him to examine company correspondence from both the Quincy

and Calumet & Hecla copper companies to assess how local mine managers cooperated to obstruct these activities. Goings, who holds a PhD in history from Simon Fraser University, is co-authoring a book about the 1913 strike to be published by Michigan State University Press.

Louis Slesin, editor and publisher of Microwave News, will examine

research reports and local response to two United States Navy radio

transmission installations in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and northern

Wisconsin. Developed under the project names “Sanguine” and

“Seafarer,” the sites operated extra low frequency (ELF) transmitters

for communication with naval submarines from 1989 to 2004. Concerns

about potential ecological and health effects of electromagnetic field

(EMF) radiation prompted a series of scientific studies, some

conducted by researchers at Michigan Technological University. Slesin,

who holds a PhD in environmental policy from the Massachusetts

Institute of Technology and intends to produce a book-length study of

ELF EMF effects from the submarine transmitter as well as power lines

providing electricity to the facilities.

Susan Evans, associate professor in the Department of Art and Art

History at Michigan’s Oakland University, will visit in May to examine

historical photographs of Finnish immigrants to the region. A

photographer and artist, Evans is seeking parallels between how

Finnish photographers capture aspects of culture in their work.

Following her visit to Houghton, Evans will travel to Haukijarvi,

Finland, for a summer residency with the Arteles Creative Center.

While in Finland, Evans plans to compare her Michigan research to

historical Finnish photographic images and create new photographic

work using historic wet plate techniques which are inspired by her

archival research. The resulting images will be incorporated into

Evans’ professional exhibition, presentation, and publication


As part of their research visits, travel award recipients will present

a public presentation – either on their research in progress or on a

topic from their previous work. Information about these events will be

distributed as they are scheduled.

Since 1998, the Friends of the Van Pelt Library have supported more

than 25 scholars and researchers from across the United States,

Canada, and Europe to access the Archives’ collections. Books,

articles, presentations and web content have resulted from the work of

travel grant recipients, helping to draw attention to the holdings of

the Michigan Tech Archives and the history of Michigan’s Copper

Country and Upper Peninsula.

For more information on the Travel Grant program and the Archives’

collections, contact the Michigan Tech Archives at 487-2505,

copper@mtu.edu, or on the web at http://www.lib.mtu.edu/mtuarchives/.