Howdy, I’m Jacob Dinkelaker, the historian and website designer behind Woohistory.org. I created this website as part of my Senior Independent Study project at The College of Wooster. Instead of writing a traditional Independent Study (usually a 60-100 page thesis) I proposed to my advisers, Dr. Katherine Holt and Dr. J. Heath Anderson, to create a website. Building a website allowed me to incorporate my interests in public history and digital humanities with my double major in history and archaeology. My work researching The College of Wooster’s history was featured on The Chronicle of Higher Education’s website in November of 2010.
As with any significant undertaking like Independent Study, no one is completely alone in his or her enterprise; all receive help from any number of people during their project. I was no different, and the long list of acknowledgments follows. I would like to thank:
The entire staff of The College of Wooster Libraries, who devoted an enormous amount of energy and time towards my project. Mark Gooch scanned photos, Sharon Bodle reserved rooms for me to conduct interviews, and Mark Christel provided logistical support in all of this. I especially want to thank Denise Monbarren and Elaine Smith Snyder, Special Collections librarians, and their student workers. All of them pulled numerous reference boxes, photocopied documents, offered their observations, and consulted with me on all matters of the history of the College and the buildings I researched. Thanks also to Jenny Derksen, the Writing Center consultant who has worked with me since freshmen year, and who worked with me throughout this project as well.
The Instructional Technology office provided support, ideas, and encouragement throughout the entire process of creating this website. Matt Gardzina, Jon Breitenbucher, and Odin Tangvald all were there when I ran into trouble and bugged them almost daily for help and advice. Also thanks to Kelsey Grassman, who provided voice narration on some of the videos.
All those I interviewed or talked to about my project, including Donna Jacobs, Hayden Schilling, and Dan Calhoun (the full interview with Dr. Calhoun is available here), who all allowed me to film them for this project. Also, Vivian Holliday and Arn Lewis provided advice and sources along the way.
Last, but certainly not the least, my advisers, Katherine Holt and J. Heath Anderson. We argued and fought, they pushed me and I pushed back, but without their encouragement and the high expectations they set, this project wouldn’t be what it is today.
I’m sure I’m probably forgetting a few people, so to those I have forgotten but who deserve thanks nonetheless, thank you. Finally, I want to thank all the visitors to my website. I hope you enjoy it.
March 2011 – Wooster