Annual Local History Roundtable

Annual Local History Roundtable small red moon logo

2022: Living with History

The 13th Annual Local History Roundtable will be held on Wednesday, March 23, 2022 from 1:00 - 5:00 pm. This year's theme, Living with History, explores the intimate ways that the present informs how we talk about the past, and how we can bring history out beyond the walls of our institutions.

We plan for a shortened, in-person event held on GVSU's campus. Participants will be required to follow all university guidelines regarding COVID-19, which are subject to change up until the date of the event and are likely to require wearing a mask, taking a brief online health assessment, and a temperature check upon entry. We will keep our communications updated with any changes. Thank you for understanding as we keep our community safe and healthy.

Registration and program details coming soon.


Past Roundtables

  • 2021 (Leading the Charge for Change): The 12th Annual Local History Roundtable took place entirely online out of concerns for the health and safety of our community. Presenters included Katelyn Bosch VerMerris, Liette Gidlow, Allison Lange, Sophia Brewer, David McCord, Brenda Nemetz, and Kristen Wildes. Recordings of all 2021 sessions are available on our YouTube channel.
  • 2020 (Women as Changemakers): The 11th Annual Local History Roundtable, scheduled for March 2020, was cancelled due to COVID-19. The 12th Annual Local History Roundtable will have a similar theme and feature some of the presentations that had to be cancelled in 2020.
  • 2019 (Connections Along the Grand River): Held at GVSU's L. William Seidman Center; featured speakers included: Jan Brashler (GVSU) and the following local history organizations and historians - Ada Historical Society, Allendale Historical Society, Boston/Saranac Historical Society, Cascade Historical Society, Grand Rapids City Archives, Eastmanville History, Grand Rapids Historical Society, Grand Rapids Public Museum, Grand Rapids Public Library, Grandville Historical Commission, Ionia County Historical Society, Jenison Historical Association, Lamont History, LGROW, Lowell Area Historical Museum, Ottawa County Parks and Recreation, Plainfield Historical, Portland Area Historical Society, Tri-Cities Historical Museum, Wallace and Jane Ewing, and Paul Trap
  • 2018 (Returning to our Roots: Explorations of Western Michigan's Diverse Communities): Held at GVSU's Kirkhof Center; featured speakers included: Ronald J. Stephens of Purdue University, Kathryn Remlinger (GVSU), and Andrea Riley-Mukavetz (GVSU)
  • 2017 (Reconstructing Home): Held at GVSU's Mary Idema Pew Library and Information Commons; featured speakers included Professor Bich (Beth) Minh Nguyen (author of Stealing Buddha's Dinner), Julie Tabberer, Head of the Local History Department and Special Collections at Grand Rapids Public Library, and Nathan Nietering of Saugatuck-Douglas History Center. 
  • 2016 (Changing Communities): Held at GVSU's Mary Idema Pew Library and Information Commons; featured speakers included Todd Robinson (author of City Within a City), Tim Gleisner (now of Herrick District Library), and Delia Fernandez (Michigan State University)
  • 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