Student anti-war protest at Bethel in late February 2003

Over the summer Fletcher invited Bethel alumni, faculty, and staff to share their memories of the War on Terror by completing a questionnaire. I want to join him in thanking those of you who have taken the time to write us. But I also want to step out of my usual role in this project and add […]

Reliving the Versailles Peace Conference in Versailles

This morning let me leave Bethel’s past for a moment and look to a small part of Bethel’s future, as it connects to one of the wars we’re studying… This coming January, my colleague Sam Mulberry and I will take a group of Bethel students to Europe for a three-week course on the history of World […]

Cover of H.G. Wells, The Shape of Things to Come

If you’ve been wondering why it’s been so quiet here at the Bethel at War project blog… Bethel just finished its first week of class, which kept me occupied, and Fletcher just scarpered off to start his semester abroad. So what’s the future of this digital history? While we had originally thought that we would take our full site live this fall, […]

Defense worker at work in Minneapolis

From 1935 to 1945, photographers like Dorothea Lange, Walker Evans, and Ben Shahn were hired by the federal government to travel the United States, capturing images of Americans at work, play, rest, and worship. The project began as an effort to build public support for portions of the New Deal aimed at helping poor farmers, but the photographers […]

Morgan Hall

We’ve noted a few times here that 2014 is the 100th anniversary of the two events whose intersection gives this project a point of departure: In 1914 the modern age of warfare began with the onset of World War I; also that year, what’s now Bethel University made its permanent home in St. Paul, Minnesota when the Swedish Baptist Theological […]

Mass on Saipan in June 1944

If there’s one thing I’ve learned from the letters sent back to Bethel during World War II by former students and members of its denomination who were serving in the military, it’s this: complaining about one’s pastor is as common in war as in peace. I did attend both Protestant chapel services, and my first impression was […]

The "Eagle's Nest" above Berchtesgaden

Even a cursory glance at the letters, diaries, and memoirs of the American combat soldiers [in World War II] reveals that their view of the Old World focused first and foremost on the natural surroundings…. the GIs had a love-hate relationship with nature. That’s the somewhat surprising start to the body of Peter Schrijvers’ illuminating […]

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