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Huck, Jim, and Jim Crow

Landmarks of American History and Culture Workshops for School Teachers

Postmark Deadline: March 1, 2012

“Huck, Jim, and Jim Crow” consists of two one-week NEH Landmarks of American History and Culture Workshops held summer 2012 for eighty school teachers on Mark Twain, Huckleberry Finn, and race in post-Reconstruction America. The workshops explore Mark Twain and his writings in their social, political, and historical contexts. Project director Craig Hotchkiss heads a team of scholars and educators who prepare participants to teach their students about Huckleberry Finn, the important issues it addresses, and the controversies it has engendered. The program opens with a tour of the Mark Twain House in Hartford, Connecticut, where Twain lived from 1871 to 1891. The tour is led by Hotchkiss and chief curator Patricia Philippon, who introduces the museum’s library, archives, and collections. Scholarly presentations begin on the first day with Kerry Driscoll (St. Joseph College) on “The Origins of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” Other literary scholars include John Bird (Winthrop University) on the novel’s use of dialect; Robert Hirst (General Editor of the Mark Twain Project, University of California at Berkeley) exploring “Mark Twain on Racism” through the author’s own notes and drafts of the novel; Stephen Railton (University of Virginia) on Twain’s relationship with George Washington Cable and their “Twins of Genius Tour”; Ann Ryan (Le Moyne College) on the era’s representations of black men; and Bruce Michelson (University of Illinois) on the novel’s ending. Further framing is provided by Wilbert Jenkins (Temple University) on African Americans during Reconstruction and the advent of Jim Crow, and Eric Lott (University of Virginia) on the blackface minstrel tradition. Curator David Pilgrim (Ferris State University) also guides teachers through the exhibition “Hateful Things,” on loan from the Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorabilia.  

Dates: Hartford, CT: July 9–13 or July 23–27
Grantee Institutions: Craig Hotchkiss, The Mark Twain House & Museum
Location: The Gilded Age home of Mark Twain

About NEH Landmarks of American History: Workshops for School Teachers

The National Endowment for the Humanities is an independent grant-making agency of the federal government. As part of the NEH’s We the People program, we offer the following Landmarks of American History and Culture Workshops for School Teachers. NEH Landmarks of American History and Culture Workshops provide the opportunity for K-12 educators to engage in intensive study and discussion of important topics in American history and culture. These one-week programs will give participants direct experiences in the interpretation of significant historical and cultural sites and the use of archival and other primary evidence. Landmarks Workshops present the best scholarship on a specific landmark or related cluster of landmarks, enabling participants to gain a sense of the importance of historical places, to make connections between what they learn in the Workshop and what they teach, and to develop enhanced teaching or research materials.

Amount of Award

Teachers selected to participate will receive a stipend of $1,200 at the end of the residential Workshop session. Stipends are intended to help cover living expenses, books, and travel expenses to and from the Workshop location.


These projects are designed principally for classroom teachers and librarians in public, charter, independent, and religiously-affiliated schools, as well as home schooling parents. Other K-12 school personnel, including administrators, substitute teachers, and classroom professionals, are eligible to participate, subject to available space.

Teachers at schools in the United States or its territorial possessions or Americans teaching in foreign schools where at least 50 percent of the students are American nationals are eligible for this program. Applicants must be United States citizens, residents of U.S. jurisdictions, or foreign nationals who have been residing in the United States or its territories for at least the three years immediately preceding the application deadline. Foreign nationals teaching abroad at non-U.S. chartered institutions are not eligible to apply.

Applicants must complete the NEH application and provide all of the information requested to be considered eligible.

New this year: An individual may apply to up to two NEH Summer Programs in any one year (Landmarks Workshops, Summer Seminars, or Summer Institutes), but may participate in only one. Please note that eligibility criteria differ significantly between the Landmarks Workshops and the Seminars and Institutes Programs.

How to Apply

Please e-mail, telephone or send by U.S. Post a request for application information and expanded Workshop descriptions to the Landmarks directors listed here; in many cases, these materials will also be available on project Web sites. You may request information about as many Workshops as you like, and, as noted above, you may apply to up to two programs but participate in only one.