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Zumkehr Research

The funds provided by Charles E. Zumkehr in support of this professorship make possible a number of research projects. As those projects unfold, and move through the peer review process, they will be featured below.



Bisbee '17--a project exploring how a documentary film chronicles a town's belated acknowledgement, through a centennial re-enactment, of the deportation of over 1,000 immigrant miners in 1917. Research assistance from Cassidy Book and Christian Thanasoulis.


Peace and Justice Memorial

The National Memorial for Peace and Justice--a project focused on the Equal Justice Initiative's memorial to the more 4,000 African Americans lynched between 1877 and 1950. Research assistance from Cassidy Book and Christian Thanasoulis.


Legacy Museum

The Legacy Museum--a project examining the four-part story of racial violence in America as told by the Equal Justice Initiative's museum in Montgomery, AL. Research assistance from Cassidy Book and Christian Thanasoulis.


Backlighting History

Backlighting History--inspired by James W. Loewen's book, Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong, this project systematically analyzes the ways in which primary education history textbooks address shameful elements of U.S. history, such as slavery, Native American genocide, and the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. Co-authoring with James Kelly.


Eagle Cafe

Eagle Cafe--an oral history of patrons and employees of the Eagle Cafe, a popular restaurant run by Japanese American families in my hometown of Scottsbluff, NE. The cafe closed in 1967, but those who spent time there remember it as a place where the owners and staff modeled lifelong practices of communicating with others. Notably, the Eagle Cafe was long-listed as an entry in Victor Green's The Green Book.

Remembering Japanese American Internment—exploring the extensive online collections hosted by the Japanese American National Museum, this work involves three projects: an analysis of “home” in letters written by interned children (forthcoming in Communication Quarterly, co-authored with Alexis Karolin), an examination of power in the internment camp photographs taken by Jack Iwata (forthcoming in Visual Communication Quarterly, co-authored with Alexis Karolin), and an exploration of fractured identities in the diary of Stanley Hayami (co-authored with Anna Wilhelm).

Things Remembered—an ongoing project investigating how keepsakes provide memory anchors that ground individual identity in time and place. Research assistance provided by Haley Janoski, Bayley Fields, and Beth Shiller.