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Making History Accessible


Thursday, May 30 — Friday, May 31, 2024

Registration is now open! 

Download a copy of the final program:

2024 Annual Meeting Program

Library of Congress
James Madison Memorial Building
101 Independence Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20540

Making History Accessible

Historical knowledge and resources should be available and accessible to all. This year’s SHFG conference will explore the numerous and creative ways that federal historians, curators, archivists, administrators, contractors, and specialists are making federal history and historical resources available to public and professional audiences. While expanding access to the past on new platforms has many benefits, it also presents a range of challenges. We encourage submissions that address these obstacles, in either specific or abstract ways, and that discuss how historians and organizations can work–and are working–toward the goal of making history accessible to wider audiences.  

Thursday, May 30th


Registration Opens (Light Breakfast) Dining Room C


Session 1: Workshops

Oral History Workshop – Montpelier Room

Federal Jobs Workshop – West Dining Room



10:45 - 12:15

Session 2 

Panel 1

Dining Room A

Panel 1: “Incorporating Medical History and Humanities into Health Literacy and Outreach from the National Library of Medicine”

Dining Room A

Martha Meacham, National Institutes of Health

Julie Volpenhein, National Institutes of Health

Panel 2
Montpelier Room

Panel 2: “New Directions in Archives Accessibility”

Montpelier Room

Chair: Allison Finkelstein, Arlington National Cemetery

Cheryl Fox, Library of Congress – “The Library of Congress Archives: Past and Future”

John Lyles, U.S. Marine Corps History Division – “Marine Corps History Division Strategy for Digitizing Archival Materials for Public Access”

Andy Salamone, U.S. Department of Defense – “Accessible Archives: Assistive Technology and Digital History for those with Print Disabilities”

Rachel Whyte, George Mason University – “Religious Digitization: A Step Beyond a Database”

Panel 3

West Dining Room

Panel 3: “Oral History in the Army Historical Program”

West Dining Room

Julie Prieto, U.S. Army Center of Military History

Nick Schlosser, U.S. Army Center of Military History

Matthew Margis, U.S. Army Center of Military History

Mason Watson, U.S. Army Center of Military History

Mark Folse, U.S. Army Center of Military History

Mike Yarborough, U.S. Army Center of Military History




Dining Room A


Session 3

Panel 4

Montpelier Room

Panel 4: “Updates on and Implications of State Department Use of Machine Learning Tools for Declassification Review”

Montpelier Room

Sam Stehle, U.S. Department of State – “AI-Powered Techniques in Trustworthy Information Declassification”

Jeffery Charlston, U.S. Department of State – “Update on the State Department’s Use of Machine Learning in Records Declassification” 

John Powers, U.S. Department of State – “The Promise of Artificial Intelligence for Research Access to Classified Records”

Panel 5

Dining Room A

Panel 5: “Tilting at Windmills: Making Military Archives Work”

Dining Room A

Karen Miller, U.S. Strategic Command

Christina Luers, Air Combat Command

Elizabeth Borja, National Guard Bureau

Panel  6
West Dining Room

Panel 6: “Social Media and Federal History: Present and Future”

West Dining Room

Laura O’Hara, U.S. House of Representatives

Tracy Baetz, U.S. Department of the Interior Museum

Alexandra Levy, American Historical Association




Awards Ceremony and Trask Lecture

Montpelier Room



Montpelier Room, Dining Room A, Dining Room C

Friday, May 31st


Registration Opens (Light Breakfast)


Session 4

Panel 7

Montpelier Room

Panel 7: “A Model for Agency-wide Collaboration:  The LOC’s Summer 2023 LGBTQ+ History Workshop”

Montpelier Room

Lee Ann Potter, Library of Congress

Kevin Butterfield, Library of Congress (John W. Kluge Center)

Dan Turello, Library of Congress (John W. Kluge Center)

Megan Metcalf, Library of Congress

Cheryl Lederle, Library of Congress

Panel 8

West Dining Room

Panel 8: “Emerging Research in Federal Records: Opportunities and Challenges”

West Dining Room

Chair: Terrance Rucker, U.S. House of Representatives

Alan Gersch and William Frankenstein, Deloitte – “Applying AI for Finding the Most Important Needles in Document Archive Haystacks”

Abigail Coupe, Congressional Research Service – “Dead Letters: Historical Research and the Challenges of Managing and Accessing Federal Information”

Kyle Warmack, West Virginia Humanities Council – “Unlimited Use: Federal Records and the West Virginia National Cemeteries Project”

Panel 9
Dining Room A

Panel 9: “Implementing and Operating Oral History Programs: Considerations Across Institutions”

Dining Room A

Bridey Heing, Library of Congress

Heather Frazier, Library of Congress

Marianna Fotakos, Library of Congress

10:30- 10:45am


10:45am- 12:15pm

Session 5: Plenary

Montpelier Room

“Promoting and Protecting History in the Federal Government: Gathering Resources to Protect Endangered Programs, Justify Historian Positions, and Promote History to Non-Historians”

Montpelier Room

Julie Prieto, SHFG President

Members of SHFG Executive Council


Lunch and LOC Self-Guided Tours


Session 6

Panel 10
Dining Room A

Panel 10: “Selecting a Digital Asset Management System as a Federal History Office”

Dining Room A

Gabrielle Barr, National Institutes of Health

Devon Valera, National Institutes of Health

Haley Higingbotham, National Institutes of Health

Panel 11
Montpelier Room

Panel 11: “Development and Activities of the Public Education Project, Inc.”

Montpelier Room

Judson MacLaury

Mike Reis

Alison Trulock, U.S. House of Representatives

Meirah Shedlo Eidelman, Corporation for Public Broadcasting

Catherine Obrion, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

Panel 12

West Dining Room 

Panel 12: “You’ll Never Know If You Don’t Ask: Audience Outreach and Assessment”

West Dining Room

Mackenzie Miessau, U.S. House of Representatives

Michelle Strizever, U.S. House of Representatives

Felicia Wivchar, U.S. House of Representatives

Panel 13

Dining Room C 

Panel 13: “Psychedelics, Water Rights, and Cryptology: Uncovering the Past through Oral History and Public Engagement”

Dining Room C

Chair: Joel Christenson, OSD Historical Office

Bianca Barriskill, Golden History Museum and Park – “Modern Change and Community Resilience: BIPOC Activists, Knowledge Justice, and Colorado’s Psychedelic Drug Policy Reform”

Mark Howe, USIBWC – “Public Information and Historical Access on the Internet of the USIBWC”

Brenda McIntire, Center for Cryptologic History – “Give to Ferner”


Informal Happy Hour (Hawk 'n' Dove, Capitol Hill)


Society for History in the Federal Government
PO BOX 14139
Ben Franklin Station, Washington, DC 20044

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