Vietnam Center & Archive News and Updates

Friday, August 28, 2009

Jake Bitonel Participates in LDAC

Jake Bitonel, a student assistant at the Vietnam Center and Archive since 2007, attended the United States Army ROTC Command’s Leadership Development and Assessment Course (LDAC) at Fort Lewis, Washington from June 25 – July 23, 2009.  The ROTC Command uses the program to evaluate the leadership skills learned by its cadets.  Every ROTC cadet goes through this 28 day program consisting of PT tests, garrison positions, weapons familiarization, and war games after his or her junior year.  We are proud to announce that Jake finished among the top of his LDAC Regiment.  The Vietnam Center and Archive congratulates Jake on the fine achievement.  You can learn more about Jake by reading his profile in the September 2009 issue of Study Breaks.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Student Spotlight: Natalie Swindle

Natalie Swindle has worked as a graduate assistant for the Oral History Project of the Vietnam Archive since August of 2007. She came to the archive after graduating from Angelo State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology. Natalie is the interview transcription editor for the OHP, and she also conducts oral history interviews with Lubbock area veterans. Originally from Kerrville, Texas, Natalie is working on a Masters of Education in Counselor Education on the community counseling track. Her long term career plan is to become a counselor for veterans.
Monday, September 15, 2008

Oral History Interview of Interest

We have recently posted to our Oral History web page an interview conducted with Mr. Michael Little. Little served in the Central Highlands with the 504th MP Battalion from August of 1967 until August of 1968. While in country, Little underwent a life changing experience when he developed a very close relationship with a group of Bahnar Montagnard children from a village near Pleiku. Following his departure from Vietnam in August of 1968, Little attempted to stay in contact with the children through friends in the 504th, but lost contact after the last of his buddies returned to the US. However, in 1994, after years of separation, Little was able to reconnect with his Montagnard family when the Vietnamese government opened the Central Highlands to foreign visitors. In this interview, Little recounts his experiences in Vietnam with particular focus on his continuing relationship with his Bahnar family. In addition to helping his “adopted” family, Little continues to aid the Montagnard people through his role as a board member of the Friends of Vinh Son Orphanage. Little’s story is one of a remarkable bond that could not be broken by time, distance, or the fortunes of war.

(Photo courtesy of Mike Little)

Related Links:

Monday, August 18, 2008

Through a Glass, Darkly: Reflections of the Vietnam War in Popular Literature

Besides writing blogs, I catalog books. Right now, I’m working on the David Willson gift collection. He has donated almost 1,800 books to the Archive, mostly on the Vietnam War in popular culture. Much of this collection consists of literature: poetry, plays, short stories, fiction, and essays. Some are written by the veterans of the war, both combatants and noncombatants: soldiers, nurses, reporters, refugees, spouses, protesters, etc. Taken individually, something such as the poem about a handler’s dog or a graphic novel about veterans trying to make sense of life after the war can be quite moving. As a whole, this collection is a powerful entity with its own voice and something to say about who we were then, who we are today, and sometimes even who we and society might become in the far distant future.

I just can’t say enough about how much I appreciate our donors! So much of the library’s collection has been donated. You can search our library by donor or collection name through the Texas Tech University Library’s online catalog. Using Basic Search, go down to “Field to search” and select “Donor.” Then enter the name such as “David Willson,” “Douglas Pike,” or “Frank Evans” for the USS Frank Evans Association. It’s best to use the full name or give as much information as possible as we have many donors and also share the catalog with other libraries.

Again, your comments, input, questions and suggestions are always welcome.

Posted by at 3:25 pm
Labels: library
Thursday, August 7, 2008

Student Spotlight: Jacob Furr

Jacob Furr was born in Fort Worth, Texas and has been a student assistant at the Vietnam Archive since August 2006. Jacob was originally hired by the Vietnam Archive to digitize collections for the Virtual Vietnam Archive, but moved to collection processing for the archive in Spring 2007. Jacob will soon be leaving the Vietnam Archive as he will receive his BA in History this month. In fact, it was his interest in 20th Century American history that initially led him to the Vietnam Archive where he has done a tremendous job. Jacob is not sure what his future plans will be, but he is contemplating a graduate degree in History. Whatever he decides, we wish Jacob the best and know he will be a success.

Student Spotlight: Aaron Alford

Aaron Alford has been a graduate assistant processing collections at the Vietnam Archive since November 2006 after graduating from Texas A&M; with a BA in History and English in May 2006. While at Texas A&M;, Aaron served as editor of the Aggie student newspaper, The Battalion. Aaron will graduate from Texas Tech with an MA in Creative Writing this August. His thesis was a collection of creative nonfiction essays, titled “Boy Wonders: A Collection of Essays” that documents life in rural southeast Texas; an area in which Aaron is well versed since he is from Hull, Texas. One of the essays found in his thesis is titled “The Quick” and will be featured this month in the literary journal River Teeth.

Aaron first became interested in fiction and nonfiction about the Vietnam War from taking a writing course taught by National Book Award-winning author Larry Heinemann at Texas A&M.; This interest led Aaron to the Vietnam Archive when he arrived at Texas Tech where he has been a tremendous asset. Sadly for the Vietnam Archive, Aaron will become a Teaching Assistant in the English department at Texas Tech when he begins his PhD program in the Fall and will no longer be at the archive. We will definitely miss him, but wish him the best for the future.

Monday, July 14, 2008

More Than Just a War

Did you know that the Vietnam Archive also has a library? The library’s purpose is to support the research mission of the archive by providing books, journals, and other print resources on Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Southeast Asia, and especially the role that the United States played in the Vietnam War. We have fiction and nonfiction, children’s books, coffee table books, theses and dissertations, Bibles, and even comic books. There are books on agriculture, archaeology, music, pirates, prostitution, radicalism, theology, and zoology, and so much more. Of course, the library has all this, in addition to the stuff you were imagining that we have such as history books, magazines, personal narratives, atlases, and reference materials.

Ideally, if a book is within the scope of our collection, we hope to have not just one, but up to three copies of it, preserving these copies for researchers and the future. We receive the majority of our collection through donations to the archive, but we also have a budget for purchasing books, serials, microforms, dissertations, and theses. You can view our holdings through the Texas Tech University Library’s online catalog. Select “Advanced Search,” go down to “Limit search (Optional),” and under “Location,” choose “Southwest Coll./Special Coll.” before entering your search query.

Your comments, input, questions and suggestions are always welcome.

Posted by at 11:28 am
Labels: library
Thursday, November 1, 2007

The war that won’t go away

Interview with Dr. James Reckner

CNN.com

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Exhibition Reviews

Review of the Virtual Archive

History Cooperative

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

A Wartime Diary Touches Vietnamese

The story of Dang Thuy Tram’s diaries which mentions how they arrived at The Vietnam Archive

National Public Radio (NPR) Online

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