[This] second edition of the Encyclopedia of Local History attests to the continuing and increasing importance of its field--the evidence-based study of past people and events in a given geographical location. Featuring 100-plus pages beyond its previous iteration, this work includes concepts (historic preservation, museum ethics), sources (court records, censuses), and multitudinous subjects. Newer topical features include essays on US states and Canadian provinces; the practice of history in other English-speaking countries; the confluence of the environment and history; the democratization of serious historical analysis among those outside both the academy and curatorial worlds; and electronic forms of transmission via the Internet. Among these latter topics are a careful consideration of blogs and local history, microblogging, and social media. Instead of an index, internal methods are used to connect entries, such as see references; this approach is deliberate and intended to encourage wide-ranging browsing. The combined number of contributors from the academic, governmental, and public history areas, as well as independent scholars, has almost doubled. Appendixes highlighting ethnic and religious groups, state historical associations, and NARA facilities remain. Upstate New York historians/museum consultants Kammen and Wilson have worked to maintain a readable and substantive style throughout, providing local history enthusiasts and practitioners with a valuable learning tool. Summing Up: Recommended. CHOICE This second edition of the Encyclopedia of Local History (the first was published in 2000) continues to provide valuable information about and insights into a field of historical study that, in recent years, seems to have gained greater acceptance within the profession and remains as popular as ever with its local constituency but is, ironically perhaps, financially 'strained' more than ever before. The Encyclopedia contains new 'capsule historical biographies' of each state, Guam, and the Canadian provinces, as well as "brief sketches" of some other English-speaking countries. It also offers thematic essays or entries-most short, some relatively long-on such topics as 'American exceptionalism' (p. 25), 'environmental history' (p. 162), 'historic preservation' (p. 249), the 'underfunding of historical societies' (p. 265), 'race and class, in a local history organization' (p. 479), 'technology and local history' (p. 523), and 'interpreting women's history at local history sites' (p. 579). Kansas History: A Journal of the Central Plains The Encyclopedia of Local History is at once informative and helpful, delivering basic entries on a wide range of social and historical references, while advising both the 'casual browser and dedicated historian' on where to search for more in-depth material. Reference Reviews From A to Z this impressive volume provides a superb reference and compelling evidence of the vitality of our state and local history organizations, professionals, and citizens. -- James H. Madison, author of The Indiana Way: A State History Institutions that interpret and present local history need more than the professional standards, policies, and procedures found in other publications. They also require an intellectual foundation and knowledge of concepts and terminology that can be the substance of expressing history and culture. Kammen and Wilson have included the nuts and bolts of local history as well as important and valuable broader concepts and interpretive themes. -- Michael Rose, Atlanta History Center
The Encyclopedia of Local History addresses nearly every aspect of local history, including everyday issues, theoretical approaches, and trends in the field. This encyclopedia provides both the casual browser and the dedicated historian with adept commentary by bringing the voices of over one hundred experts together in one place. Authoritative yet accessible, comprehensive yet charming, Carol Kammen & Amy H. Wilson’s volume is a deep resource for historical organizations of any size.
The second edition features new essays about doing local history in each U.S. state and Canadian province and addresses problems, process, and technological changes in the field. Kammen and Wilson incorporate both technology and international perspectives to show how the field has grown in the 21st century. This book remains a handy reference tool that no local historian’s desk should be without!