Bancroft Roundtables

woman at a lectern
Ivon Padilla-Rodriguez presents Migrants in the Making: Invisible Agricultural Child Labor and the Limits of Citizenship, 1938-1965, for a Bancroft Roundtable event. (Photo by J. Pierre Carrillo for the UC Berkeley Library)

About the Roundtables 

Launched in 1997, the Roundtables highlight The Bancroft Library’s vast resources for studying and exploring the history and cultures of our planet. We invite established and budding scholars to offer insights into their work, be it published or as an opportunity to conceptualize and present their dissertation level research. These informal talks, which bring together the campus community and the wider public, are intended to represent the fruits of research conducted at Bancroft.

Roundtables are scheduled at noon on the third Thursday of September, October, November, February, March, April, and May and are conducted online via Zoom. These presentations will also be recorded and made available on YouTube. Please see the current speaker list below for details.

Email to be added to the mailing list.

Note: As per the university’s guidelines, all participants and hosts are now required to sign in to a Zoom account prior to joining meetings hosted by UC Berkeley. The Bancroft Library attempts to offer programs in accessible, barrier-free settings. If you think you may require disability-related accommodations or have questions about an event, please email

Speakers past and present



‘The Price We Paid’: Bancroft’s Alaska and the Worth of History to Empire

Presented by 
Ian Halter, 2022-23 Meylan Study Award fellow, The Bancroft Library, and Ph.D. candidate in history, University of Oregon

Ian Halter studies the social history of colonized communities — what he calls the “lived realities of empire and colony in the late-nineteenth century Pacific.” His talk, stemming from his dissertation on the social history of Russia’s cession of Alaska Native homelands, examines the responses of 19th-century historians to this issue. Halter examines how history and historiography — including the writings of historian Hubert Howe Bancroft — comprised a singular means for making Alaska legible as a part of the United States. Drawing on the same collections Bancroft himself used to compose his History of Alaska (1886), Halter presents the research efforts behind it as indicative of the unique — and, for Bancroft, even vexatious — conditions that delimited how once-Russian colonies might, in time, become “Yankee.”


Between Oakland and Camagüey: Cuba, the Kaiser Corporation, and the Making of a Global City

March 21, 2024 • Noon 

Presented by 
Andrew Klein, 2022-23 Hill Study Award fellow, The Bancroft Library, and Ph.D. candidate in history, University of California, Los Angeles

The Kaiser Permanente health care conglomerate was established in Oakland during World War II, but its roots lie in a road-paving company that got its first big break in 1920s Cuba. Drawing on oral histories and archival collections spanning California and Cuba, including The Bancroft Library’s Henry J. Kaiser Papers, this talk examines the Kaiser corporation’s pivotal role in the building of the Cuban Central Highway (1927-31). Completed decades before the United States had a road of comparable scale, the massive public works project had a lasting influence on the corporation and the region it called home. By following Kaiser equipment, personnel, and profits between Oakland and its outpost in Camagüey, Cuba, Andrew Klein sheds light on the historical relationship between Caribbean nations and the San Francisco Bay Area.


The Personal Diary of an Exile: Ramón Gil Navarro in Argentina, Chile, and California (1845-56)

Register via Zoom
April 18, 2024 • 11 a.m. (NOTE NEW TIME)

Presented by 
Edward Blumenthal, associate professor of Latin American studies, Université Sorbonne Nouvelle (CRIAL/ICMigrations), France, and Ignacio Zubizarreta, Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas/Instituto de Estudios Históricos y Sociales de La Pampa, Universidad Nacional de La Pampa, Argentina

Ramón Gil Navarro’s journal is probably one of the most reliable portraits of life in exile of a member of the mid-19th-century Hispanoamerican social elites. The text is intimate in character, and provides a glimpse into aspects of daily life, sexuality, and material culture that are often hidden in period sources. At the same time, it allows us to approach themes such as the politics of exile, the literary Romanticism in vogue, or national representations from a new perspective. In this talk, Edward Blumenthal and Ignacio Zubizarreta address some of the many themes running through this multifaceted coming-of-age story about a young political exile sent into the California wilderness by the family business.


“California, a Slave State”: History and the Demands for Reparations

Register via Zoom
May 16, 2024 • Noon

Presented by
Jean Pfaelzer, professor of English, women and gender studies, and Asian studies, University of Delaware

California, a Slave State (Yale University Press, 2023) exposes the untold history of slavery and slave revolts in California, from the Spanish missions up through modern reports of adults and children seized for field labor, the sex trade, the garment industry, and the new marijuana “grows.” It has earned the 2023 Heyday History Award. Author Jean Pfaelzer reveals the slave revolts, flights to freedom, and lawsuits for liberty that set the stage for modern demands for reparations, telling the story as much as possible from the voices and illustrations of people who were enslaved.

Accessibility accommodations

If you require an accommodation to fully participate in these events, please contact Bancroft Administration at least 7-10 days in advance at or 510-642-3782.

Available in an alternate format

To request this document in an alternative format, such as large-print or electronic, please contact the Library Communications Office at



Berkeley, the University, and the 1923 fire

Sept. 21, 2023  |  Noon  |  Zoom
Presented by Steven Finacom, community historian and retired staff member, UC Berkeley

One hundred years ago, on Sept. 17, 1923, a wildfire raged across North Berkeley, destroying around 600 homes and threatening the campus and downtown. Steven Finacom will share new research and insights on that historic fire, its impact on the campus community, and its resonance with the fire dangers of today.


Centering Philippine and Filipinx American histories: Selections from The Bancroft Library

Oct. 19, 2023  |  Noon  |  Zoom
Moderated by José Adrián Barragán-Álvarez, curator of Latin Americana, The Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley

To commemorate Filipino American History Month, exhibition curators will highlight some of the materials included in the online and Bancroft Corridor exhibits. These materials span nearly 500 years of Philippine and Filipinx American history, and include documentation of Spanish and U.S. colonization, UC Berkeley Filipino student publications dating back as far as 1905, and the personal papers of acclaimed author Jessica Hagedorn.


Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo’s Recuerdos: The Odyssey of a Manuscript at The Bancroft Library

Nov. 16, 2023  |  Noon  |  Zoom
Presented by Rose Marie Beebe, professor emerita of Spanish literature, Santa Clara University, and Robert M. Senkewicz, professor emeritus of history, Santa Clara University

Rose Marie Beebe and Robert M. Senkewicz will discuss their latest book, Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo: Life in Spanish, Mexican, and American California. Their deep dive into Vallejo’s writings, archives, and related papers illuminates the makeup of the social classes and ethnic groups in California during the 19th century, and the tensions and challenges they experienced as they tried to negotiate the political, economic, and social changes that were unfolding.


California and the Making of ‘Latin America’: A View From the 19th-Century Hemispheric Archive

Feb. 16, 2023 | Noon | Register via Zoom

Presented by Alexander Chaparro-Silva, Ph.D. candidate in history, The University of Texas at Austin, and 2022 recipient of The Bancroft Library Summer Study Award

During the 19th century, many intellectuals and diplomats from Latin America came to California, published continental newspapers and books, sponsored intellectual circles and political clubs, and established transnational correspondence networks to engage with the political problems common to the American hemisphere. These transnational crossings contributed to debates over slavery, citizenship, and immigration in Latin America and reinforced an Anglo/Latin distinction within the hemisphere as the boundary between two competing civilizations. Drawing upon 19th-century printed materials, travelogues, diaries, official documents, and diplomatic correspondence — many from The Bancroft Library — Alexander Chaparro-Silva will explore the role of these hemispheric mobilities in the making of the geopolitical category of “Latin America,” and reflect on the possibilities and challenges of assembling a hemispheric archive dispersed across a vast geography.

MARCH (Rescheduled from September 2022)

Demystifying the Born Digital Archives Program at The Bancroft Library

March 16, 2023 | Noon | Register via Zoom

Presented by Christina Velazquez Fidler, Digital Archivist, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley

The Bancroft Library’s Born Digital Program has been actively managing born digital materials for roughly a decade. Christina Velazquez Fidler will discuss Bancroft’s multifaceted approach to managing born digital collections, highlights from the collections, opportunities for research, and efforts to build a sustainable digital archives program. Much of the focus in born digital archives centers on the technical practices and tools necessary to manage these collections; however, this is just one layer of the overall management of these materials. A born digital archives program must address a user’s ability to access and work with these materials in practical ways while both challenging and conforming to traditional archival practices. This talk will discuss this exciting and growing area of Bancroft’s collections.


Out of the Archives and into a Narrative

April 20, 2023 | Noon | Register via Zoom

Presented by Kim Bancroft, Ph.D., Author

Kim Bancroft’s new book is an immersive look at the first and second wives of esteemed historian Hubert Howe Bancroft, founder of The Bancroft Library and the author’s great-great-grandfather. Bancroft will discuss the process of creating “Writing Themselves into History: Emily and Matilda Bancroft in Journals and Letters,” from her research in the archives of The Bancroft Library and beyond, to transcribing an abundance of letters and journals, to sorting topics and themes. She will explain how she moved beyond the chronological structure of the letters and journals she worked with to discover narratives for her chapters, and invites other writers to share their insights from working with archival materials.

“Writing Themselves into History” may be ordered from Heyday Books.


The Japanese American Intergenerational Narratives Oral History Project at the Oral History Center

May 18, 2023 | Noon | Register via Zoom

Presented by Roger Eardley-Pryor, Shanna Farrell, and Amanda Tewes, oral historians, the Oral History Center, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley

For the Japanese American Intergenerational Narratives Oral History Project, the Oral History Center recorded nearly 100 hours of interviews with 23 descendants of Japanese Americans incarcerated during World War II. The project examines intergenerational trauma stemming from incarceration at Manzanar, in California, and Topaz, in Utah; the impact of various types of healing; and how narratives change across generations. The center’s oral historians took a life history approach, starting at the beginning of subjects’ lives and working toward the present, personalizing their family histories of incarceration. These oral histories were recorded on video and transcribed to text. Once finalized and approved by the narrators, the interviews will be archived at The Bancroft Library and made publicly available through the UC Berkeley Library’s Digital Collections website. After completing the interviews, narrators had the opportunity to attend two group healing circles with a psychologist, allowing participants to reflect on the interview experience and connect with one another. This project is part of the Oral History Center’s ongoing Community and Identity Collection, one the largest digitally accessible public archives of community-based oral histories.



Demystifying the Born Digital Archives Program at the Bancroft Library 

September 15, 2022 | Noon | Register via Zoom 
Presented by Christina Velazquez Fidler, Digital Archivist, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley

The Bancroft Library’s Born Digital Program has been actively managing born digital materials for roughly a decade. Christina Velazquez Fidler will discuss Bancroft’s multifaceted approach to managing born digital collections, highlights from the collection, opportunities for research, and efforts to build a sustainable digital archives program. Much of the focus in born digital archives centers on the technical practices and tools necessary to manage these collections; however, this is just one layer of the overall management of these materials. A born digital archives program must address a user’s ability to access and work with these materials in practical ways while both challenging and conforming to traditional archival practices. This talk will discuss this exciting and growing area of Bancroft’s collections.


Anatomy of Torture

October 20, 2022 | 1 p.m. NOTE NEW TIME | Register via Zoom
Presented by Ron Hassner, Chancellor’s Professor of Political Science and Helen Diller Family Chair in Israel Studies, University of California, Berkeley
Does torture “work”? Can controversial techniques such as waterboarding extract crucial and reliable intelligence? Since 9/11, this question has been angrily debated in the halls of power and the court of public opinion. For his new book, Anatomy of Torture, Ron E. Hassner mined the archives of the Spanish Inquisition to propose an answer that will frustrate and infuriate both sides of the divide. The Inquisition’s scribes recorded every torment, every scream, and every confession in the torture chamber. Their transcripts, held by The Bancroft Library, reveal that Inquisitors used torture deliberately and meticulously, unlike the rash, improvised methods used by the United States after 9/11.


Land, Wealth and Power: Digitizing the California Land Case Files, 1852-1892

November 17, 2022 | Noon | Register via Zoom
Presented by Adrienne Serra, Digital Project Archivist, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, with an introduction by Principal Investigator Mary Elings, Interim Deputy Director, Associate Director, and Head of Technical Services, The Bancroft Library

In 2021, The Bancroft Library launched a large-scale digitization project to preserve and provide online access to more than 127,000 pages of California Land Case Files dating from ca. 1852 to 1892. These records tell an important story about the use and distribution of land, as well as social and legal justice in California following statehood in 1850, when all Spanish and Mexican land grants holders were required to prove their land claims in court. A lengthy process of litigation followed, which resulted in many early Californians losing their land. The Land Case Files are heavily used by current land owners, genealogists, historians, and environmentalists to understand the land, its uses, and ownership over time. The digitization project, Land, Wealth and Power: Private Land Claims in California, ca. 1852 to 1892 (Mary Elings, Principal Investigator), was awarded a 2019 Digitizing Hidden Special Collections and Archives: Amplifying Unheard Voices grant. Digital Project Archivist Adrienne Serra will discuss the collection and the project, including the challenges of preparing and imaging fragile materials under pandemic restrictions, and plans for future community engagement projects.

February 24th
Rebel Lawyer: Wayne Collins and the Defense of Japanese Americans
Presented by Charles Wollenbergauthor and former chair of social sciences and professor of history at Berkeley City College

In this talk Chuck Wollenberg will discuss the life and career of Wayne Collins, an uncompromising fighter for social justice with an equally uncompromising personality. Wollenberg will concentrate on Collins’ three most important cases, all stemming from the United States government’s actions against Japanese Americans during World War II: Korematsu v. United States, the Renunciants from Tule Lake, and the infamous “Tokyo Rose.” He will demonstrate that Collins was the most committed and uncompromising defender of Japanese American rights, and as a result he is one of the most important civil rights lawyers almost no one has ever heard of. Every generation of Americans needs lawyers like Collins to defend, preserve, and promote the inalienable rights promised by the Declaration of Independence and included in the Constitution.

Learn more about the book Rebel Lawyer.

This talk augments some of the materials featured in the Bancroft Gallery exhibition, Uprooted: The Incarceration of Japanese Americans, open weekdays 10 a.m.-4 p.m. through June 30, 2022. Learn more about the Japanese American Evacuation and Resettlement digital collections at The Bancroft Library.

Watch online via YouTube.

March 17th
The Land Providence Made: Legal Remnants of the American Colonization of California
Presented by Kyle DeLandPh.D. candidate in jurisprudence and social policy and Arthur J. Quinn Memorial Fellowship recipient at The Bancroft Library

Kyle DeLand will give an overview of archival research in The Bancroft Library's collections conducted for his dissertation, "Land Monopoly, Property Law, and the Crises of California Settler Society, 1841-1880." Across two years, he analyzed various materials — court cases, lawyer's papers, settler guidebooks, newspapers, pamphlets, and government publications — to excavate the multiple meanings and roles of property law in conquering, colonizing, and distributing the lands of "New California." He found that American lawyers often ascribed the development of property law in California to Providence; however, the voluminous material produced by their all-too-human labors attests to a different history, at once more mundane and more telling. In the mid-19th century, members of what he calls "the land bar" worked for decades (for sizable fees) to answer the question: Who were the "true" owners of this land? Lawyers answered this question through diverse methods — depositions on water levels, testimony on the existence or nonexistence of goats, close readings of Mexican legal documents, handwriting analysis, and racial and spiritual theories of law. To "quiet" the land they produced and preserved a colossal amount of paper as a bulwark against further conflict. What they left out of this legal accumulation was as telling as what they included. It is a collection of papers haunted by violence — by the genocidal violence of "settlers" against Indigenous Californians and by the routine violence between colonists, found in allusions to "settler trouble" and "hostile Indians." The fruits of this research will be interesting to legal historians and nonlegal historians alike.

Watch online via YouTube.

April 28th
Eastern Mediterranean Fiscal Evolution: Object Lessons From Tebtunis and Beyond
Presented by Andrew Hoganpostdoctoral fellow, the Center for the Tebtunis Papyri, The Bancroft Library

Andrew Hogan, postdoctoral scholar at the Center for the Tebtunis Papyri (CTP), will present his research on the evolution of fiscal complexity in the Eastern Mediterranean during the first millennium B.C. During this period of imperial development, states sought innovative strategies for managing wealth and extracting resources from their populations that built upon both traditional and imported practices. Hogan identifies a battery of related fiscal developments that evolved in tandem during this time, many of which were used by states until the early modern period and beyond (e.g., coinage, banking, auctioning tax farming concessions, etc.). Hogan will explore the evolution of these institutions in the Near East, Greece, and Egypt, and will highlight a number of Ptolemaic papyri in the CTP collection that are crucial for illuminating these phenomena.

Watch online via YouTube

May 19th
'Ride Him, Cowboy': The Life and Fiction of Kenneth Perkins
Presented by Randal Brandthead of cataloging, The Bancroft Library

Kenneth Perkins, one of the most prolific and successful genre writers of the first half of the twentieth century, got his start at the University of California where he graduated with a degree in English as a member of the Class of 1914. After accepting a challenge from his Cal classmate Frederick Schiller Faust (better known by his pen name Max Brand) to give up his academic career and turn to writing, Kenneth Perkins wrote plays, novels, radio and television scripts, and scores of short stories between 1920 and his death in 1951. Some of his tales were mysteries, some adventure, and some horror. Most, however, were—like those of his friend and mentor, Max Brand—Westerns. Many of Perkins’ stories were adapted for the screen, and starred the likes of such Hollywood royalty as Ken Maynard, Tom Mix, John Wayne, Robert Young, Randolph Scott, and Barbara Stanwyck.

Watch online via YouTube.

September 16th
Expanding Access to WWII Japanese American Incarceree Data Using Machine Learning
Presented by Marissa FriedmanDigital Project Archivist, The Bancroft Library
Watch online on YouTube

October 21st
A Good Drink: In Pursuit of Sustainable Spirits
Presented by Shanna FarrellInterviewer, Oral History Center, The Bancroft Library
Watch online on YouTube

November 18th
The Photographs of the Northwest Boundary Survey, 1857 to 1862
Presented by James EasonPrincipal Archivist, Pictorial Collection, The Bancroft Library
Watch online on YouTube

February 18th
Eldridge Cleaver and the Global Archive
Presented by Justin D. GiffordProfessor of English Literature, University of Nevada, Reno

March 18th
Everything She Touched: The Life of Ruth Asawa
Presented by Marilyn ChaseContinuing Lecturer, Graduate School of Journalism, University of California, Berkeley
Watch online on YouTube

April 15
Inescapable Mutuality of Place: Aaron Mair, Environmental Justice, and the Sierra Club Oral History Project
Presented by Roger Eardley-PryorHistorian, Oral History Center, The Bancroft Library
Watch online on YouTube

April 29th (Special Roundtable Edition)
Graphic in Transit: Sergio Sánchez Santamaría
Presented by Sergio Sánchez SantamaríaArtistRaúl Ferrera BalanquetArtist, Curator, and Instructor In Residence, Center for Afrofuturist StudiesMiguel Rojas-SoteloCo-Editor, Duke University; and Rafael A. OsubaArtistic Director, Artist Studio Project
Watch online on YouTube

May 20th
"An Island Rises from the Sea to Annex Itself": George Davidson, the Pacific Coast Survey, and the Charting of an Oceanic American Empire
Presented by Alexander Arroyograduate student, Department of Geography and Kenneth E. and Dorothy V. Hill Fellowship recipient

September 17th
Curious Elision: Reading Philip Whalen's Manuscripts at The Bancroft
Presented by David Brazilnoted poet, pastor, and translator
Watch online on YouTube

October 15th
Dark Archives: A Librarian's Investigation into the Science and History of Books Bound in Human Skin
Presented by Megan RosenbloomCollection Strategies Librarian at UCLA and cofounder of Death Salon
Watch online on YouTube

February 20th
Brown, Behind the Scenes: Contending with Governor Jerry Brown and his Oral History
Presented by Martin MeekerDirector, and Todd Holmes, Historian, Oral History Center, The Bancroft Library

March 19th
More Than a Centennial Celebration: California Women and the Vote
Presented by Lee Anne TitangosInformation and Instruction Specialist, The Bancroft Library

Regretfully this event was canceled due to current events. The speaker, Lee Anne Titangos, converted her talk into the online presentation below. Closed captioning was edited to accurately reflect the talk. A PDF of the slides, complete with image citations, is also available. 


Past events

FALL 2019

September 19th
The Makings of a Mutiny: Ghadri Poetry and Interrogations of Subjugated Knowledges in History
Presented by Amrit DeolPhD Candidate in Interdisciplinary Humanities, UC Merced

October 17th
An Invaluable Resource: Reporting on Recent Archival Processing of Environmental Collections at The Bancroft Library
Presented by Lisa MonhoffEnvironmental Collections Project Archivist, The Bancroft Library

November 21st
"To make letters live, that men themselves may have more life": Manuscript Analysis and the Lettering Arts
Presented by Chris McDonaldAssistant Pictorial Archivist, The Bancroft Library


February 21st
Migrants in the Making: Invisible Agricultural Child Labor and the Limits of Citizenship, 1938-1965
Presented by Ivón Padilla-RodríguezPhD candidate in History at Columbia University and Visiting Dissertation Research Scholar at the UC Berkeley Latinx Research Center

March 21st
Sacred Time on the Frontier: Sabbath-keeping amongst Protestants and Jews in California, 1848-1920
Presented by Michel Sunhae LeePhD candidate in Religious Studies at University of Texas

April 18th
Cherokees and Choctaws Among the Miwok and Yokuts: Legacies of Cultural Blending and Intertribal Relations in Nineteenth Century California
Presented by Andrew ShalerPhD candidate in History, UC Riverside

May 16th
"Loans for the Little Fellow": Credit, Crisis, and Recovery in the Great Depression
Presented by Sarah QuincyPhD candidate in Economics at UC Davis

FALL 2018

September 20th
A Wise Counselor and Faithful Servant: The Life of Regent Andrew Smith Hallidie
Presented by Taryn EdwardsLibrarian, Historian, and Strategic Partnerships Manager, Mechanics' Institute of San Francisco

October 18th
Education as the Project of Freedom: A Study of the Berkeley Experimental Schools Project, 1968-76
Presented by Joanne Tiendoctoral candidate, Education, UC Berkeley

November 15th
Pictures of a Gone City: Tech and the Dark Side of Prosperity in the San Francisco Bay Area
Presented by Richard A. WalkerProfessor Emeritus, Geography, UC Berkeley, and Director, Living New Deal Project


February 15th
Solving Mysteries at The Bancroft Library: The Fifth (Floor) Dimension
Presented by Kenna FisherManuscripts Cataloger, Bancroft Library

March 15th
California's Place in Anti-Slavery Litigation on the Eve of the Civil War
Presented by Alexandra HavrylyshynJ.D. and Ph.D. candidate, Jurisprudence and Social Policy, and Bancroft Library Study Award recipient, UC Berkeley

April 19th
From Kitchen Tables to Laboratories: Nutritional Science at UC Berkeley, 1895-1930
Presented by Kimberly Killiondoctoral candidate, History, and Bancroft Library Study Award recipient, UC Berkeley

May 17th
The Business of Silver and Gold: Comstock Mines, California Finance, and the Production of Money in the Gilded Age West, 1860-1879
Presented by Rick Elliottdoctoral candidate, History, and Arthur J. Quinn Memorial Fellowship recipient, The Bancroft Library, University of Illinois at Chicago

FALL 2017

September 21st
Is the Civil Rights Struggle of the 1960s Still Relevant Today?
Presented by Carol Ruth SilverSpeaker, Author, Consultant, and Retired Attorney

October 19th
City of White Gold, San Francisco in the Gilded Age: Bringing Archival Images to Life through Film
Presented by Geordie Lynchfilmmaker

November 16th
Native Claims Across Nations: Indigenous Land Ownership in Mexican and U.S. California, 1840-1860
Presented by Julia Lewandoskidoctoral candidate, History, UC Berkeley


February 16th
Views of the Women's Liberation and Feminist Movements of the 1970s and 1980s: Selections from the Cathy Cade Photograph Archive
Presented by Cathy Cadedocumentary photographer

March 16th
The Sail Before the Trail or Have We Missed The Boat?
Presented by Fred E. WoodsProfessor of Latter-day Saint Church History and Mormon Doctrine, Brigham Young University

April 20th
Marking Time: Gwendolyn Brooks and the Mundane World
Presented by Amani MorrisonBancroft Library Study Award recipient and doctoral candidate in African Diaspora Studies, UC Berkeley

May 18th
Native American Collections at The Bancroft Library
Presented by Lee Anne TitangosInstruction Specialist, Bancroft Library

FALL 2016

September 15th
Bobby Soxers In The Fields: Girls' Emergency Farm Labor During World War II
Presented by Jennifer R. Terry, doctoral candidate in History, UC Berkeley

October 20th
Whose Story Gets Told? Constructing a Biography when Sources Seem Too Limited
Presented by Michael Helquist, public historian

November 17th
The Ingenuity and Bravery of Lillian Gilbreth
Presented by Ferd Leimkuhler, professor emeritus, Purdue University


February 18th
The Historical Background of the New Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive
Presented by Ann Harlow, Independent Scholar

March 17th
The Idle Readers of Piers Plowman in Print
Presented by Spencer Strub, Bancroft Library Summer Award recipient and doctoral candidate in English and Medieval Studies, UC Berkeley

April 21st
Evidencing Boundaries: Text, Image, and Experience in Techialoyan Manuscripts
Presented by Jessica Stair, Bancroft Library Summer Award recipient and doctoral candidate in History of Art, UC Berkeley

May 19th
Dangerous Ground: Squatters, Statesmen, and the Rupture of American Democracy, 1830-1860
Presented by John Suval, Gunther Barth Fellow at The Bancroft Library and doctoral candidate in History, University of Wisconsin-Madison

FALL 2015

September 17th
Whiskerology: The Meaning of Hair in Nineteenth-Century America
Presented by Sarah Gold McBride, doctoral candidate in History, UC Berkeley

October 15th
Before the PPIE: The Mechanics' Institute and the Development of San Francisco's 'Fair Culture,' 1857-1909
Presented by Taryn Edwards, Librarian/Historian, Mechanics' Institute Library and Chess Room, San Francisco

November 19th
Literary Industries: Hubert Howe Bancroft's History Company and the Privatization of the Historical Profession on the Pacific Coast
Presented by Travis E. Ross, doctoral candidate in History, University of Utah


February 19th
The Campanile at 100: Researching What We Thought We Knew
Presented by Steven Finacom, career Berkeley campus staffer

March 19th
"Counter-Institutions are the Answer, Man!" Multi-Ethnic Publishing in the San Francisco Bay Area in the 1970s
Presented by Simon Abramowitsch, Bancroft Library Study Award recipient and doctoral candidate in English, UC Davis

April 16th
Highlights and Shadows: Books on Photography from the Reva and David Logan Collection
Presented by Christine Hult-Lewis, PhD, the Reva and David Logan Curatorial Assistant at The Bancroft Library

May 21st
"The World’s Best Working Climate": Modeling Industrial Suburbs on the Edge of San Francisco Bay
Presented by Peter Ekman, Bancroft Library Study Award recipient and doctoral candidate in Geography, UC Berkeley

FALL 2014

September 18th
Adolph Sutro as German-American Pioneer: Lifework and Impacts
Presented by Hermann-Victor Johnen, Visiting Scholar, Institute of EuropeanStudies, UC Berkeley

October 16th
Joseph N. Leconte: Exploring, Mapping, and Photographing the High Sierra, 1890–1930
Presented by Larry Simon, Federal Consistency Coordinator, California Coastal Commission

November 20th
Exposing the Hidden Collections of The Bancroft Library: A Report on the "Quick Kills" Project
Presented by Lara Michels, Archivist, The Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley


February 20th
Reading Between the Lines: Translation in Ancient Egypt
Presented by Emily Cole, Bancroft Library Study Award recipient and doctoral candidate in Egyptology, UCLA

March 20th
Hawaiian Pioneers in Mexican California
Presented by Gregory Rosenthal, Arthur J. Quinn Memorial Fellow at The Bancroft Library and doctoral candidate in History, SUNY, StonyBrook

Gold on the Trees, Gold in the Ground: Cyanide and the Making of Southern California (1886-1915)
Presented by Adam Romero, Bancroft Library Study Award recipient and doctoral candidate in Geography, UC Berkeley

May 15th
The Place of Print: Publication and the Regional Imagination in the Mining West, 1849-1869
Presented by Garrett Morrison, Reese Fellow at The Bancroft Library and doctoral candidate in English, Northwestern University

FALL 2013

September 19th
Bolton, His Maps, and The Bancroft Library
Presented by Albert L. Hurtado, Travis Chair in Modern American History, University of Oklahoma

October 17th
Thomas Kuchel: California's Liberal Republican Senator
Presented by Jason Bezis, Boalt Hall graduate who is writing a biography of Senator Thomas Kuchel

November 21st
Fallout Films: Bruce Conner's Atomic Sublime, 1958–1976
Presented by Johanna Gosse, Ph.D. Candidate in History of Art, Bryn Mawr College


February 21st
Southern and Californio Convergence in Southern California: General Andres Pico and the Chivalry Democrats,1846-1861
Presented by Daniel Lynch, Ph.D. candidate in the UCLA Department of History and Bancroft Library Gunther Barth Fellowship recipient

March 21st
The Lives and Loyalties of UC Berkeley's Pensionados
Presented by Adrianne Francisco, Ph.D. candidate in the UC Berkeley Department of History and Bancroft Study Award recipient

April 18th
The Mother Tongue in the Uttermost West: Yiddish-Language Print Materials in the Magnes Collection
Presented by Eli Rosenblatt, PhD. candidate in the UC Berkeley Jewish Studies Program and Curatorial Intern at the Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life

FALL 2012

September 20th
Beyond Words: Diary Secrets Out From Under Lock and Key
Presented by Susan Snyder, Head of Public Service, The Bancroft Library

October 18th
What's in the News: A Look at the Fang Family San Francisco Examiner Photographic Negative Collection
Presented by Lori Hines, Pictorial Archivist, The Bancroft Library

November 15th
It Was a Bloody Mess: Vallejo's 1942 Race Revolts and the Port Chicago Sailor's Strike
Presented by Javier Arbona, Ph.D. candidate in Department of Geography, UC Berkeley, and Bancroft Study Award Recipient


February 16th
Rain of Gold: A Century of Circular Labor Migration from Mexico
Presented by Israel Pastrana, Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of History, UC San Diego, and Bancroft Study Award Recipient

March 15
The Worlds of Oratorian Devotion in 17th & 18th Century Mexico City
Presented by Benjamin Reed, Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of History, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Reese Fellowship Recipient

April 19th
Manuel Lozada's Indigenous Rebellion : A 19th Century Tale of Capital, Race, and the Struggle Over Territory in Mexico
Presented by Diana Negrin da Silva, Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of Geography, UC Berkeley, and Bancroft Study Award Recipient

May 17th
The Political Economy of Gold, Money and Loyalty: Californians and Greenbacks in the Civil War Era
Presented by Michael T. Caires, Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of History, University of Virginia, and Gunther Barth Fellowship Recipient

FALL 2011

September 15
Illuminating the Jewel City: Spectacular Lighting at the Panama Pacific International Exposition
Presented by Laura Ackley, Architectural Historian

October 20th
It's Still Fun: An Inside Look at Small Press Publishing
Presented by Malcolm Margolin, Publisher, Heyday Books

November 17th
The Fight for the Public Interest: California's 2nd Convention Reconsidered
Presented by Jeff Lustig, Scholar


February 17th
Presented by Tara McDowell, Ph.D. candidate in the History of Art Department, UC Berkeley, and Bancroft Study Award Recipient

March 17th
Colonial Lessons: English Instruction in the Philippines and the Benevolence of U.S. Overseas Expansion, 1898-1916
Presented by Funie Hsu, Ph.D. candidate in the Graduate School of Education,UC Berkeley, and Bancroft Study Award Recipient

April 21st
Linguistic Landscapes of the Sierra Nevada
Presented by Hannah Jane Haynie, Ph.D. candidate in Linguistics, UC Berkeley, and Bancroft Study Award Recipient

FALL 2010

September 16th
California on the Breadlines: Dorothea Lange, Paul Taylor. and the Making of a New Deal
Presented by Jan Goggans, Professor, School of Social Sciences, Humanities, and Arts at UC Merced

October 21st
Introducing The Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life at The Bancroft Library
Presented by Alla Efimova, Director, Magnes Collection

November 18th
Attacking Municipal Inequality: The NAACP and the Integration of the Oakland Fire Department. 1950-1955
Presented by Martin SchiesI, Professor Emeritus, Department of History, California State University, Los Angeles


February 18th
Premodern Manuscript Fragments in the Present
Presented by Heather Bamford, Ph.D. candidate, UC Berkeley Department of Hispanic Languages and Literatures

March 18th
Jack Spicer's "Correspondences"
Presented by Colin Dingier, Ph.D. candidate, UC Berkeley Department of Rhetoric

April 15th
Migrating Mexico: A Material History of Remittance Space in Sur De Jalisco, Mexico And California, USA
Presented by Sarah Lopez, Bancroft Study Award recipient, Ph.D. candidate, UC Berkeley Department of Architecture

May 20th
Popular Science at Berkeley and the Long History of American Studies
Presented by Alex Olson, Gunther Barth Fellowship recipient, Ph.D. candidate in the Program in American Culture at the University of Michigan

FALL 2009

September 17th
Towers of Gold: How One Jewish Immigrant Named Isaias Hellman Created California
Presented by Frances Dinkelspiel, Author

October 15th
The Making—and Unmaking —of Southeast San Francisco
Presented by Rachel Brahinsky, Ph.D candidate, UCB Department of Geography

November 19th
Disrupting the Status Quo: The Story of Dr. Sidney Garfield
Presented by Tom Debley, Author and Director of Heritage Resources at Kaiser Permanente


February 19th
The "New" Bancroft
Presented by Bancroft Library staff

March 19th
John Francis Pyle and the Economic Culture of Rural California in the Late-Nineteenth Century
Presented by R.Todd Welker, UC San Diego

April 16th
To Grow Up with the Country: Pioneers, Personal Narrative, and Historical Memory
Presented by William Wagner, UC Berkeley

May 21st
"Little Postage Stamps of Native Soil": The Modernist Haiku During Japanese Exclusion
Presented by Audrey Clark, Department of English, UC Berkeley


February 21st
Henry J. Kaiser in Hawaii: More than a Mogul
Presented by Tom Debley and Bryan Culp, Director and Archivist (respectively) of Kaiser Permanente Heritage Resources

March 20th
East from California: How Ideas, Methods and Personnel from California Influenced the Conquest of the Interior West
Presented by Benjamin Madley, Doctoral Student, Yale University

April 17th
Private City, Public Threat: Entertainment, Industry, and Illusion in Emeryville, CA, 1896-1933
Presented by Seth Lunine, Bancroft Study Award winner and Doctoral Student, UC Berkeley

May 15th
Reducing Practice Into Speculation: Multiplicity as a Problem in Early Modern Translation Theory
Presented by Belen Bistue, Bancroft Study Award winner and Doctoral Student, UC Davis

FALL 2007

September 20th
The Man Who Named the Storms
Presented by Donald M. Scott, Independent Scholar

October 18th
San Francisco's Lost Landmarks
Presented by James R. Smith, Author

November 15th
Driven Out: The Forgotten Wars Against Chinese Americans
Presented by Jean Pfaelzer, Professor of English, University of Delaware


February 15th
Surely This City is Bound to Shine: Descriptions of Salt Lake City by mid 19th Century Westward Bound Emigrants
Presented by Fred Woods, Professor, Brigham Young University

March 15th
Origins of a California Maverick
Presented by Sean Burns, Bancroft Study Award Winner and Ph.D candidate in the Department of the History of Consciousness, UC Santa Cruz

April 19th
How Early California was Seen by Germans
Presented by Bernd Brunner, M.A., Free University of Berlin, independent cultural historian, and author

May 17th
Raiding the Rancho: Livestock and Power in Native California
Presented by Nat Zappia, Bancroft Study Award Winner and Ph.D Candidate, Department of History, UC Santa Cruz

FALL 2006

September 21st
Telling Tales of the Becoming Self: Nawalism and the Obscured Power of Women from Colonial to Contemporary Recordings in MesoAmerica
Presented by Janferie Stone, Ph.D. Candidate in Anthropology at UC Davis

October 19th
Late 20th Century Poster Collections at The Bancroft Library
Presented by Lincoln Cushing, Graphic Arts Librarian

November 16th
Land Litigation in California after the Mexican American War
Presented by Michelle Morton, Bancroft Curator for Latin American Collections


February 16th
States of Culture: The Central Government and Ethnoracial Consolidation in Mexico and the US, 1920-1950
Presented by Ruben Flores, Bancroft Study Award Winner, History, UCB

March 16th
'Conversion' as a Unifying Theme in Bancroft's Medieval Manuscript 106, a Thirteenth-Century Compendium of Marian Legends, Saints' Lives, and Arthurian Romance
Presented by Stephanie Green, Comparative Literature and Medieval Studies, UCB

April 20th
Free Speech/Free Sex: A Look at Sex Education and Reproductive Health at Student Health Services
Presented by Heather Munro Prescott, Professor of History, Central Connecticut State University

May 18th
The Race of Space in San Francisco's Mission District
Presented by Francisco Casique, Bancroft Study Award Winner, Ethnic Studies, UCB

FALL 2005

September 15th
Max Tivoli's San Francisco: A Bancroft Odyssey
Presented by Andrew Sean Greer, Author

October 20th
Niimiipu Narratives: The Essence of Survival in the Indian Territory
Presented by J. Diane Pearson, Lecturer in Ethnic Studies

November 17th
Tangible Memories: Californians and Their Gardens 1800 -1950
Presented by Judith M. Taylor, Author


February 17th
Cavalry, Cads and Convicts: The Restless Residents of Jalapa, Mexico, 1812-1835
Presented by Rachel A. Chico, Department of History, UC Berkeley, Bancroft Fellow

March 17th
Pacific Origins: Chile and the Making of Nineteenth-Century California, 1848-1900
Presented by Edward Melillo, Ph.D Candidate, History Department, Yale University

April 21st
The Engel Sluiter Document Collection
Presented by Anil Mukerjee, History Department, UC Santa Barbara, Bancroft Fellow

May 19th
Working Women and Racial Politics in San Francisco During the Late 19th Century
Presented by Hellen Lee, Literature Department, UC San Diego, Bancroft Fellow

FALL 2004

September 16th
Unsettling the West: Eliza Farnam and Georgiana Bruce Kirby in Frontier California
Presented by JoAnn Levy, Author

October 21
William Saroyan, Heroin and Ethics: "The Sad Tale of an Archive Broken"
Presented by Peter Howard, Antiquarian Bookseller

November 18th
Guardians of the Golden Gate: John Birge Sawyer, Angel Island, and the Great Immigrant Smuggling Scandal
Presented by Robert E. Barde, Deputy Director, Institute of Business and Economic Research, Haas Business School


February 19th
City Lights Books: The History of a Community
Presented by Jim Gatewood, Ph.D. Candidate, Brown University

March 18th
Locating "Our Language" in Northwestern California: Clues to Indigenous Linguistic Geography
Presented by Lisa Conathan, Bancroft Fellow

April 15th
The Importance of Being Relevant: Bay Area Poets in the World, 1935-1942
Presented by Kimberley Bird, Bancroft Fellow

May 20th
Consuming By Design: Consumption, the Arts and Crafts Movement, and Julia Morgan's Domestic Architecture
Presented by Karen McNeil, Bancroft Fellow

FALL 2003

September 18th
'Culture of Conquest' Cast in Bronze: Exploring the Politics of Cultural Representation and Identity Formation in New Mexico
Presented by Dulcinea Lara, Bancroft Fellow

October 16th
Bear in Mind: The California Grizzly
Presented by Susan Snyder, The Bancroft Library

November 20th
Recovering Female Voices and Perspectives
Presented by Rose Marie Beebe, Professor, Santa Clara University


February 20th
Persian and Arabic Manuscripts at The Bancroft Library: An Introduction
Presented by Shayee Khanaka, UC Berkeley Library

March 20th
Visions of Pacific Destiny: Culture of Western Expansion and American Women's Work of Benevolence, 1880s-1900s
Presented by Yu-Fang Cho, Bancroft Fellow

April 17th
Contested Isles: The History and Representation of Ellis Island and Angel Island
Presented by Jeffrey Alan Ow, Bancroft Fellow

May 15th
Historical Evolution of Education and its Detrimental ideological and identity Forming Consequences on New Mexico
Presented by Dulcinea Michelle Lara, Bancroft Fellow

FALL 2002

September 19th
The FBI, UC Berkeley, and the "Freedom of Information Act"
Presented by Seth Rosenfeld, Reporter, San Francisco Chronicle

October 17th
Archival Resources and the Changing Landscape of the San Francisco Bay Area
Presented by Elise Brewster, Researcher/Artist

November 21st
"Uncle Freddy" Coombs: The "Mad Hatter" of California's Pioneer Photographers
Presented by Peter Palmquist, Independent Historian of Photography

December 19th
Holiday Readings
Presented by Bancroft Staff


February 21st
Yogores, Pachucos, and Zoot Suiters: The Making of a Multiethnic Youth Culture Among California Minorities
Presented by Allison Varzally, Bancroft Study Award Winner

March 21st
Above the City, Upon a Hill: 19th Century Lithographs of San Francisco from the Honeyman Collection
Presented by Isabel Breskin, Bancroft Study Award Winner

April 18th
New World Utopias
Presented by Michelle Morton, Bancroft Study Award Winner

May 16th
Miracles of the Virgin: Popularity and Reception
Presented by Adrienne Williams, Bancroft Study Award Winner

FALL 2001

September 20th
Eadweard Muybridge at Bancroft Library
Presented by Rebecca Solnit, Author

October 18th
Contemporary Typographical Implication of the Native American Manuscript Tradition
Presented by Robert Bringhurst, Author

November 15th
Reflections on the Legacies of Governor Pat Brown
Presented by Ethan Rarick, Author

December 20th
Readings from The Bancroft
Presented by Bancroft Staff


February 15th
Dislocations and Relocations: The Built Environments of Japanese American internment
Presented by Lynne Horiuchi, Bancroft Library Fellow

March 15th
Politics of Translation: Missionaries and Indigenous People in New South Wales and Oregon Territory, 1825-1845
Presented by Anne Keary, Bancroft Library Fellow

April 19th
Every Colored Man is the Victim of Bitter Prejudice and Unjust Laws: Race and the Right to Be Heard in California's Courts, 1850-1873
Presented by C. Michael Bottoms, Bancroft Library Fellow

May 17th
Researching the Pentagon Papers
Presented by Daniel Ellsberg, Author

FALL 2000

September 21st
The Shakespeare First Folio (1623) and the Spanish Connection
Presented by Alan H. Nelson, Professor of English

October 19th
Different Voices, Different Lives: the Gay Bears Oral History Project
Presented by William E. Benemann, Librarian, Boalt School of Law

November 16th
A Lifetime in the World of Books
Presented by Bernard M. Rosenthal, Bookseller

December 21st
Reading from The Bancroft Library
Presented by Bancroft Staff


February 17th
Christian Seed in Western Soil: The Graduate Theological Union and the University of California
Presented by Lucinda Glenn Rand, Archivist, Graduate Theological Union Library

March 16th
Indian Resistance to Colonialism: The Pimas of Sonora
Presented by Robert Perez, Bancroft Library Study Award Recipient

April 20th
Envoys of Empire: California Engineers and the Common World Destiny
Presented by Jessica Teisch, Bancroft Library Study Award Recipient

May 18th
Stalking the Hunter: Thoughts on the Origin of America's Hunting Tradition
Presented by Daniel Herman, Central Washington State University at Ellensburg

FALL 1999

September 16th
Crime and Reward: The Untimely Death of William Chapman Ralston, the Triumph of Senator Sharon, and the Birth of the Bureau of Reclamation
Presented by Gray Brechin, PhD, California Historian

October 21st
California Dreaming: A View from the Southwest
Presented by Theresa Salazar, Curator of The Bancroft Collection

November 18th
The Bancroft Library Press...8 Years, 8 Projects
Presented by Peter Koch, Printer

December 16th
Readings from The Bancroft
Presented by Bancroft Staff


February 18th
Waiting for the Paradox: Bacteriophages and the Origins of Molecular Biology
Presented by Gunther Stent, Emeritus Professor of Molecular Biology

March 18th
Genteel Markets, Tumultuous Streets: Women in Public in Turn-of-the-Century San Francisco
Presented by Jessica Sewell, Bancroft Fellowship Recipient

April 15th
The Cold War and Planetary Science at The Bancroft Library
Presented by Keay Davidson, biographer of Carl Sagan

May 20th
Exorcizing the Devil: Cultural Authorities Respond to Tobacco and Chocolate in Seventeenth-Century Spain
Presented by Marcy Norton, Bancroft Fellowship Recipient

FALL 1998

September 15th
Mechanical Engineering at UC Berkeley: The First 125 Years
Presented by Werner Goldsmith, Professor of Mechanical Engineering

October 15th
Never so Wonderful a Book Written by Man
Presented by Victor Fischer, Mark Twain Project

November 19th
Earthquakes and Earth Science as Measured on the Seismograph of Environmental History
Presented by Philip L. Fradkin, Rhetoric Department

December 17th
Readings from The Bancroft Library
Presented by Bancroft Staff


February 19th
Medieval French Manuscripts in Bancroft
Presented by Joseph Duggan, Professor of French and Associate Dean of the Graduate Division

March 19th
Documenting the Disabled Person's Independent Living and Civil Rights Movement
Presented by Susan O'Hara and Mary Lou Breslin, participants in the formative years of the movement

April 16th
Semana Santa in the Sierra del Nayarit: Historical Roots of a 'Syncretic' Tradition
Presented by Richard Warner, Bancroft Fellow

May 21st
The Artist's Genius and The Author's Facile Pen: Word and Image in John Muir's "Picturesque California"
Presented by Elizabeth Leavy, Bancroft Fellow

FALL 1997

September 18th
New Light on Old Leaves: Unveiling the Tebtunis Papyri for the 21st Century
Presented by Arthur Verhoogt, Faculty member at the University of Leiden

October 16th
Institution and Artifact: Inquisition Documents in the Bancroft Library
Presented by Gillian Boal and Walter Brem, Senior Conservator and Curator for Latin American materials (respectively)

November 20th
Huck Finn Redux: A New Edition of Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Presented by Robert Hirst, Principal Editor of the Mark Twain Project

December 18th
Eat, Drink and be Conversational —A Feast for Ideas at Year's End!
Presented by Bancroft Staff


February 27th
Inaugural Roundtable: The Future of California's Past
Presented by Charles Faulhaber, Director of The Bancroft Library

March 20th
Hetch Hetchy: The Untold Story
Presented by Gray Brechin, Bancroft Fellow

April 17th
Chinese Immigration During the Chinese Exclusionary Act
Presented by Erika Lee, Bancroft Fellow

May 17th
Northern California Redwood Logging Towns
Presented by James Buckley, Bancroft Fellow