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Pikes Peak Regional History Symposium

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Age Group:

Adults , Seniors
Registration for this event is no longer open.
Allowed Ages: Over 18 and up

Program Description

Event Details

Nice, Naughty, & Notable: Colorado Springs at 150

In a year marking the 150-year anniversary of the founding of Colorado Springs by William Jackson Palmer, Pikes Peak Library District is pleased to offer our 2021 Pikes Peak Regional History Symposium virtually! This year's program has been divided into four separate virtual events (May 22, June 26, July 24, and August 28). We are excited to celebrate our city's sesquicentennial with you!

August 28 Program

Rick Sturdevant: Air and Space Forces in Colorado Springs: Their Bases and Memorable Characters

Ever since World War II, Colorado Springs has hosted U.S. military air and, subsequently, space forces. From Peterson and Ent Air Force Bases to the U.S. Air Force Academy, Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station, and Schriever Air Force Base, the community has welcomed numerous Army Air Forces, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Space Force, and joint service organizations, plus a binational defense command. Along the way, a plethora of individuals—officers, enlisted, and civilians—came and went (some even stayed), and some became memorable. This presentation highlights a few of the latter and their legacy to Colorado Springs.

Mark James: Edwin James, Pikes Peak, and the American West

This presentation will introduce my ancestor, Edwin James, a mostly obscure historical figure of United States history. As an explorer, Edwin James performed the first documented ascent of Pikes Peak. As a botanist, he is credited with discovering and naming hundreds of plants, including Colorado’s state flower, the rocky mountain blue columbine. Along with a general narrative of the life and times of Edwin in the context of American Westward expansion, I will share my personal account of climbing further Pikes Peak on July 14, 2020 to commemorate the bicentennial year of Edwin’s achievement. 

Kathy Sturdevant: The Quaker Trail: Moral Infiltration, Disintegration, and Revival in the Pikes Peak Region

Easterners populated Colorado and the Pikes Peak Region, founding towns, and determining policies during a period when the United States was fighting wars and political “polarization.” Many of those Easterners were products of moral reform and social experimentation from the Second Great Awakening. Those “awakened” folks had joined forces with Quaker social activists to fight against slavery and for racial and women’s equal rights. Contemplating westward expansion, some of them sought new utopias, some saw the American Indian as a new charge, and still others directed their passion toward disciplined business development and practices. Regardless of chosen causes and methods, they left a trail as they made their marks.

(The program will conclude with a Q&A session)