On Saturday, October 29, 2011, Shepherd University’s Historic Preservation Program presented a symposium on the West Virginia GeoExplorer Project (www.wvgeohistory.org). The project is an innovative, geographically-based web resource for exploring the history, culture, and architecture of Jefferson County. Dr. Anne Knowles, Associate Professor of Geography at Middlebury College, served as keynote speaker. Dr. Knowles is the author of numerous books and articles on Geographic Information Systems (GIS), including several based on her work with the Philadelphia GeoHistory Project. She has also received numerous fellowships and major grants for her work applying GIS to historical studies. These include a National Science Foundation Collaborative Research Grant for Holocaust and Historical GIS, as well as funding for a two-week interdisciplinary workshop through the Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies at the United States National Holocaust Museum on the Geographies of the Holocaust.
Other speakers included Shepherd University professors Dr. Keith Alexander, coordinator of the historic preservation program and principal investigator for the project; Dr. Ann Legreid, dean of the College of Business and Social Science; and Dr. Julia Sandy-Bailey, Assistant Professor of History. They were joined by Dr. William Theriault, Ms. Tori Myers, and Ms. Christine Toms.
The symposium, which took place place in the Robert C. Byrd Center for Legislative Studies, ran from 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM. The event was made possible by a grant from the West Virginia Humanities Council, with additional support from Shepherd University’s School of Business and Social Sciences and the West Virginia Association of Geospatial Professionals. It was free and open to the public.