“The Santa Fe Trail: Three Centuries of Western History,” April 11 ASH Scholars Lecture with University of Arkansas Prof. Elliott West

 04/11/2024

As part of a multi-day celebration of our inaugural ASH Scholars team’s tireless work researching the Santa Fe Trail, University of Arkansas Alumni Distinguished Professor of History Emeritus Elliott West will traverse 80 miles of the Trail, making four stops between the Kansas border and La Junta, Colorado, which shine light on three centuries of the history of the American West. The talk will take place on Thursday, April 11 at 5:30pm in the Bond Life Sciences Center’s Monsanto Auditorium, with a reception beforehand at 5:00pm. Though not required, we encourage anyone planning to attend to RSVP using this link.

Abstract

A single stretch of the Santa Fe Trail, roughly eighty miles from the Kansas border to La Junta, Colorado, offers a tour of western American history from the early 18th century until World War II. In this talk we will stop at four spots along the Trail and listen to what they can tell us, from the rise and collapse of Native superpowers, the entanglement of the West in a wider world, and the ironies and tragedies of conquest.

Elliott West, Alumni Distinguished Professor of History Emeritus at the University of Arkansas, is a specialist in the social and environmental history of the American West and in American Indian history. He is the author of eight books, most recently Continental Reckoning: The American West in the Age of Expansion. Four of those books have received national awards. In 2009, he was one of three finalists for the Robert Foster Cherry Award for the outstanding classroom teacher in the nation. In 2017-18, he was the Harmsworth Visiting Professor of American History at the University of Oxford.