Happy New Year to all. This last year was a big year for my family and I. Here is my 2009 in review:
In January, I started my second semester as a history graduate student at MSU, classes were History of Science and Historical Writing, while I continued to transcribe letters for the John Tyndall Correspondence Project. Before the semester, we took a quick trip to Portland.
In February, I put together a display for MSU’s Renne Library about evolution and creationism, and was featured on a BBC radio program about Darwin Day (see here and here).
In March, I traveled to the University of North Carolina, Wilmington for Darwin’s Legacy, a student conference. I presented my undergraduate paper “’I Have Hardly the Means’: Charles Darwin, Transoceanic Dispersal, and the Geography of Science.” It won best paper for my session. My son also turned three years old.
In April, E.O. Wilson visited MSU, and I was fortunate to participate in some student events with him.
In May, Patrick and I got in a little birding (here, here, and here), something I am not an expert in but just learning a little here and there.
In June, I worked on an independent study, reading texts in the history of American science, while spending a lot of time with my son outside (here and here, for example) and visiting the zoo in Billings, MT for the first time.
In July, my wife started her new job as Digital Collections Librarian at the public library in Butte, Montana. I also took my first trip out of the United States – to Cambridge, England for the conference “Darwin in the Field” (presenting again on Darwin and his seed experiments). Cambridge afforded me the opportunity to visit significant places in Darwin’s life as well as many exhibits, and to meet fellow Darwin bloggers Richard and Karen. Pictures from this trip here, and my blog posts collected here.
In August, I drove the Beartooth Highway for the first time, and spent lots of time with Patrick exploring Butte.
In September, we all moved to Butte. I started my third semester (this time commuting four days a week) in the MA history program at MSU, classes were World History and some credits for working on my professional paper (not a thesis). Instead of being a graduate research assistant (Tyndall letters), this semester I took a crack at being a teaching assistant, for a course on religion, politics, and conflict in Jerusalem over several thousand years. Interesting experience, and I am happy to have gained more knowledge about the topic.
In October, I took another trip to England, this time a full week in London for research in two archives, the Royal Institution and Kew Gardens. Again, full of Darwin and sciencey goodness, most especially Darwin’s home Down House. Pictures here.
In November, I headed down to Phoenix for my first History of Science Society Annual Meeting. I gave a talk about history of science blogging and met all sorts of historians, historians-in-the-making, and history of science bloggers. About my talk here, and some pictures here.
In December, I finished off my semester and got some much-needed direction for the professional paper I will write next semester in order to graduate in May!
Throughout the entire year, it was fun to witness my son’s curiosity blossom.
No trips to see family this year, but in May we will take a two-week road trip to see both sides of the family in California. And in March Catherine has a library conference in Portland and Patrick and I will tag along for some exploring.
2009 was a big year for me, not only my first trips out of the country but my first conference presentations as well. And my wife starting a new job, Patrick being three (terrible twos? ya right!). Who knows what 2010 will bring!
The top posts on my blog this year were, with no surprise, those that offered information about various Darwin programs on television or other documentaries: