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2007.02.14 > For Immediate Release
contact: Becky Bohan Brown - University Affairs
phone: 402.554.2243 - email: rbrown@mail.unomaha.edu

Missouri Valley History Conference to Celebrate 50th Anniversary March 1-3

Omaha — History enthusiasts, scholars and students from across the Omaha metropolitan area, Nebraska, the Midwest and the nation are invited to participate in and celebrate the 50th Annual Missouri Valley History Conference (MVHC).

The conference will be held Thursday, March 1, through Saturday, March 3, at the Embassy Suites Old Market/Downtown, 555 S. 10th St. All areas of history will be discussed during 52 panel sessions. Special emphasis will be placed on local and regional history. Scholars and students of history from around the country will be coming to present new areas of research in the discipline.

The University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) Department of History has been hosting the event since 1958. "It is one of the largest and oldest history conferences in existence in the country," said Moshe Gershovich, associate professor of history at UNO and the 2007 MVHC program coordinator. "We're excited to be celebrating its 50th."

To receive a copy of the conference program, contact Gershovich at (402) 554-3175 or mgershovich@mail.unomaha.edu. The program is also available online at http://www.unomaha.edu/mvhc/program.php.

Numerous special events are planned to commemorate this year's milestone event. On the eve of the conference (Wednesday, Feb. 28), the Douglas County Historical Society and First National Bank will host an Anniversary Reception. It will be held on the Executive Level (40th floor) of First National Tower from 7 to 9 p.m. and feature First National Bank's private collection of Western art. The collection includes paintings and sculpture by Ted Long, Frederick Remington and Charles Bodmer, as well as artifacts and architectural elements. Pre-registration for the reception is required and will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis. To register, contact Gershovich at (402) 554-3175 or mgershovich@mail.unomaha.edu.

On Friday evening, March 2, from 7 to 9 p.m., the MVHC will celebrate its golden jubilee at a reception hosted by UNO Interim Chancellor John Christensen. The event will be held at the William H. and Dorothy Thompson Alumni Center on UNO's Dodge Street campus. Numerous veterans of the MVHC will be on hand to share their memoirs of the conference's history.

John Wunder, professor of history at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, will be the guest speaker at the March 1 Phi Alpha Theta luncheon, set for 1 p.m. His talk is titled "On Comparative History: Two Treaties." Phi Alpha Theta is a history honor society at UNO. The Nebraska Chapter of the Phi Alpha Theta Society will hold its own annual conference Friday and Saturday, March 2-3, in conjunction with the MVHC.

Fred Donner, professor of history at the University of Chicago and a notable scholar of early Islamic history, will be the featured speaker at the March 2 MVHC luncheon. His talk is titled: "New Views on the Origins of Islam."

A special presentation, which is free and open to the public, will be held March 1 at the Embassy Suites from 8 to 9 p.m. Tim McNeese from York College will present "John Wesley Powell and his 1869 Exploration of the Grand Canyon."

An extensive book and media exhibit - featuring several commercial publishers and university presses, as well as regional historical museums and societies - will also be on display at the conference.

Pre-registration for the MVHC is $50 by Feb. 15. Registration after Feb. 15, and at the door, is $60. The registration fee covers both the Wednesday and Friday receptions, but it does not include the two conference luncheons; the cost to attend the Phi Alpha Theta and/or MVHC luncheon is an additional $20 for each.

Students from area high schools, colleges and universities are admitted free with ID (excluding meals) and are encouraged to register. Also, the UNO Department of History Dual Enrollment Committee has provided funding for all Omaha Public Schools (OPS), Millard and District 66 teachers to attend the conference free of charge. Teachers should show their identification badges for entry into the conference.

For more information, call Gershovich at (402) 554-3175.

The Missouri Valley History Conference Inc. is a non-profit corporation in the state of Nebraska. The 50th Annual MVHC is sponsored by MVHC Inc. and the UNO Department of History.

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