by Dr. Gregory J. W. Urwin

Temple University faculty members, alumni, and graduate students have long played a prominent role in the Society for Military History, but this year’s annual conference at Frederick, Maryland, from April 19 to 22, will have CENFAD’s fingerprints all over it.

Temple doctoral student Michael E. Lynch served on the SMH’s 2007 Program Committee, assisting with conference arrangements and the selection of paper panels.

Two members of the CENFAD family have been nominated for the SMH’s Board of Trustees – Professor Jennifer L. Speelman (Ph.D., 2001) of the Citadel and Professor Gregory J. W. Urwin of Temple. If elected, Speelman and/or Urwin will take office during the conference.

Urwin organized and will chair a paper panel titled “Draw Sabers: Cutting Edge Research on the U.S. Cavalry.” Two of the presenters have Temple connections. Ph.D. candidate Richard Grippaldi will speak on “’Healthy, Active, and Respectable Men of the Country’: The Enlisted Men of the U.S. Regiment of Dragoons, 1833-36.” Thomas G. Nester (M.A., 2002) will present a paper titled “On the Frontlines of Civil-Military Relations: The Seventh U.S. Cavalry Confronts the ‘Southern Problem’ during Reconstruction.” Grippaldi is currently Urwin’s student and Nester wrote his M.A. thesis, “The Impact of the Memphis and New Orleans Race Riots of 1866 on Northern Public Opinion and Sectional Politics,” under Urwin’s direction. Fittingly, the SMH bestowed Nester with a Russell F. Weigley Travel Award to defray his expenses for the conference.

Urwin is commenting on a second paper panel, “World War II: The ‘Good War’ through a Non-Traditional Lens,” and Speelman will chair one on “World War II Submarine Warfare.”

Professor Beth Bailey of Temple will present a paper titled “’If You Like Ms., You’ll Love Private’: The Modern Volunteer Army and the Woman Soldier.” It is part of a panel on “Calculated Appeals: The U.S. Military and Its Publics, from the Korean War to the All Volunteer Era.”

J. Britt McCarley (Ph.D., 1989), Chief Historian of the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, will chair and comment on a session devoted to “’No Time Like the Present’: Collecting, Archiving, and Teaching the Army’s Branch History as Part of the Global War on Terrorism.”

Another Temple alumnus, Professor Henry G. Gole (Ph.D., 1991) of the U.S. Army War College, will comment on a panel that covers “Soldiering in the 18th and 19th Centuries.”

Patrick Speelman (Ph.D., 2000), Jennifer Speelman’s husband and a visiting assistant professor at the Citadel, will chair a panel that addresses “Problems in Civil-Military Relations (8th C BC - 18th C).”

Professor Douglas V. Johnson (Ph.D., 1992) of the Army War College will chair a panel exploring “Religion in War.”