Annual Local History Roundtable

"Changing Communities"

The 7th Annual Local History Roundtable will be held on Thursday, March 24, 2016 in the Mary Idema Pew Library on GVSU's Allendale Campus. Focused on the theme, "Changing Communities," the meeting will explore how West Michigan cities like Grand Rapids, Holland, and Muskegon have transformed over the past century and more. Please join us!

Todd Robinson

Please Register Now!

A registration fee of $25 includes breakfast, lunch, and dinner for the full day plus all conference related materials. Registration is free for Kutsche Office Members. Members also receive additional benefits throughout the year.

To register for the 2016 Annual Local History Roundtable, please click here.

To become a member of the Kutsche Office, click here.

Each spring, the Local History Roundtable brings together librarians, archivists, curators, community members, preservationists, educators, students, and others who share a passion for local history. The one to two day conference is organized by a local, volunteer planning committee. A different theme and location is chosen each year. We hope you will join us for the 2016 meeting.

Highlights of this year's meeting include an opening keynote address by Professor Todd Robinson, author of A City Within a City: The Black Freedom Struggle in Grand Rapids. Professor Robinson is a specialist in urban and African-American history. He is currently an Associate Professor of History at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas. Other highlights include:

  • A closing address by Mr. Timothy Gleisner, Head of the Local History Department and Special Collections at Grand Rapids Public Library;
  • Discussion with Professor Delia Fernandez, Assistant Professor of History at Michigan State University, and a specialist on Puerto Rican and Mexican Grand Rapids;
  • Panel presentations focusing on our changing lakeshore communities; and
  • A dinner business meeting for museums, library/archives, and historical society staff.

We hope you will join us! Registration for the 2016 meeting is now open. Register here.

Kutsche Office members always receive free admission to the Roundtable, among other benefits. Visit the "Friends of the Kutsche Office" page to learn more and to become a 2016 member.


Gordon Olson Award

We are now accepting nominations for the Gordon Olson Award! Winners will be announced at the annual Roundtable Meeting.

Local History Roundtable

Past Roundtables

  • 2015 ("Food, Farm, and Table"): Held at the Grand Rapids Public Library, featured speakers included Hank Meijer (Meijer, Inc.) and Ellen Messer (Tufts University).
  • 2014 ("Immigration and Civil Rights"): Held at the Holland Museum, featured speakers included Bing Goei (State of Michigan) and Nora Salas (GVSU)
  • 2013 ("Natives, Settlers, and Founders: Our Shared Community History"): Held at the Grand Haven Community Center, featured speakers included Eric Hemenway (LTBB), Wallace Ewing, and Marjie Viveen
  • 2012 ("Transportation and Waterways"): Held at the Annis Water Institute in Muskegon, featured speakers included Kevin Finney (Jijak Foundation), Carl Bajema (GVSU), Daniel Yakes (MCC), Christine Byron (GRPL), and Tom Wilson
  • 2011 ("Meaning of the 150th Civil War Commemoration"): Held on GVSU's Allendale campus
  • 2010 (General meeting): Held on GVSU's Allendale campus