History Department
History Department

Public History Graduate Seminar produces “Behind the Tower: New Histories of the UT Tower Shooting” web site

Fri, July 22, 2016
Public History Graduate Seminar produces “Behind the Tower: New Histories of the UT Tower Shooting” web site
BEHINDTHETOWER.ORG

In the spring of 2016, eleven graduate students and one History professor convened a History graduate seminar called Public And Digital History. Studying various methods and forms of public history, they focused on producing a public history of the mass shooting that Charles Whitman carried out at UT Austin on August 1, 1966. Their collective work -  a web site called Behind the Tower: New Histories of the UT Tower Shooting - was launched on July 20.

“The fiftieth anniversary of the shooting has produced more attention to these events than in the recent past, but we found that reliable historical treatment was lacking,” the Behind The Tower site states. “Our goal is to use this website to open up a discussion of all the issues connected with the shooting, its context, and its aftermath.”

Professor Joan Nueberger, who led the The Public History Seminar, wrote upon launching the site, “Teaching a graduate seminar in Public History turned out to be one of the most inspiring teaching experiences of my career."

"The students were able to do archival research (for the first time, for many of them) in local archives, and the subject of the shooting raised all the critical issues we want our students to think about in doing research and presenting historical analysis,” said Neuberger.

“None of us is a specialist in this subject and we only had one semester to identify important problems, collect and analyze research materials, and write our essays,” the web site notes. “We want this website to raise questions, elicit curiosity, and encourage people to continue to dig into the history of what has to be one of the most important historical events to take place in Austin, Texas.”

Check out “Behind the Tower: New Histories of the UT Tower Shooting” at:
behindthetower.org/



Bookmark and Share